ORLEANS CO. - Ah, spring! Time for robins, green grass, warmer weather and - mud.
The severity of mud season this year seems to be dependent on where you go. Some motorists are finding themselves up to their hubs in mud and needing tows while others are making the pass with ease.
“We certainly have our share of muddy back roads this season, that’s for sure,” said Charleston Selectman Dean Bennett. However, he wouldn’tgo so far as to say it’s any worse than previous years. “It just came a little earlier.”
Several warm days in a row opened up more areas a bit earlier than normal, but most of them would have been a problem at one time or another.
A few people on the Hudson Road got stuck, Bennett said. “We had a major sink hole we fixed over there late Friday,” he said.
Bennett has not heard of any vehicle damage caused by being stuck in the mud.
Road crews are trying to clean up the soupy spots. They want to put down crushed stone and cap it.
“We’re behind the eight ball right now on it,” said Bennett. “We’re going to attack every hole as quickly as we can get to it. If people are patient, we’re on our way, but we can’t be everywhere at once.”
Roads in Derby are passable and, as of Tuesday, they haven’t been bad enough to close. Terry Tice, Derby road foreman, said last week’s warm temperatures made the frost come out too fast.
“I’ve seen it a lot worse years and years ago,” said Tice. “We’ve kept everything passable.”
Tice said he heard that someone got stuck in the mud by Salem View Heights, but feels it may have been operator error.
Newport Center Roads are perfect, said road commissioner Fred Barraw. This he credits to road crews putting down gravel, using chloride, making drainage ditches and other summer maintenance.