Pipe replacement coming to southern Madison County without road closures

OWENS CROSS ROADS, Ala. (WHNT) — The Madison County Commission says pipe conversion will finally begin in some rural but busy areas starting the week of October 24, barring no road closures.

Typically, drainage projects require you to contend with a closed road while crews cut up old galvanized pipes to replace them.

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But at the locations at 1907 Hobbs Island Road and 2964 Old Big Cove Road and 119 Old Gurley Pike in Owens Cross Roads, some of them have already been repaved or have no real detours.

The solution, according to District 3 Commissioner Craig Hill, is to use newer technology of water pipe collars pushed under the streets, which he told News 19 would save taxpayers’ money and avoid problems for first responders in the long run.

“The process is a bit more costly than if we put in our labor to cut the road, but traffic flow can continue. So, in an emergency, you can’t set a price for the emergency vehicle that needs to travel that road. So we can leave that road open and emergency travel can go ahead as normal,” Hill said.

“We try not to close more roads than we have to, but maintenance is what it is and having the safest road to drive on. Sometimes a day’s work saves a dire situation, because if one of these pipes collapsed, the road would collapse. And with a lot of heavy vehicles like we have during construction — heavy trucks — it could be a dire situation if one of those pipes collapsed. So we try to be in front of it.”

The replacement lines should be able to carry more water than before, even during floods, and last decades longer than the old lines.

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