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Mine Subsidence in Ohio

Diary of an Abandoned Underground
Mine Subsidence Remediation:
Jackson County State Route 32

March 1999 Journal

 Concrete Pavement
(Click on photo for larger version.)  In only eight hours, Kokosing crews had poured more than 1,000 cubic yards of concrete, completing the paving on half the westbound driving and passing lanes 2/10/99 
  
 
Smoothing Concrete Pavement
(Click on photo for larger version.)  Kokosing crews smooth out the concrete driving surface   2/10/99 
  
 
Concrete Paving
(Click on photo for larger version.)  The view from behind Kokosing's concrete paver, which paves two full lanes at a time  2/10/99 
  
 
Concrete Paver
(Click on photo for larger version.)  The view from in front of Kokosing's concrete paver  2/10/99 
  
 
Concrete Dump Truck
(Click on photo for larger version.)  Concrete being dumped from a dump truck onto a conveyor belt that leads to the concrete paver 2/10/99 
  
 
Steel Baskets
(Click on photo for larger version.)  The westbound lanes prior to paving.  The green metal pieces are called "baskets."  They basically act as expansion joints for the concrete. 2/10/99 
  
 
Trucks with Stone
(Click on photo for larger version.) Stone is being brought in to bring the project up to subgrade 1/26/98 
  
 
Stone Fill
(Click on photo for larger version.) Another shot of the stone being trucked in to bring the project up to subgrade 1/26/98 
  
 
Rutted Mud Waste
(Click on photo for larger version.) This photo was taken at one of the "waste" sites, an area where unfit fill material is dumped.  To give you an idea of how deep those muddy ruts really are, the peak of one of the ruts would hit the average-sized person at around knee level  1/25/99 
  
 
Removing Mud
(Click on photo for larger version.) Kokosing crews spent this morning (1/25) removing muddy fill material.   A layer of gravel will be placed on top of the fill material, which will allow crews to resume the filling operation. 
  
 
Mud!
(Click on photo for larger version.) Now that's a lot of mud!  This photo was taken this morning (1/25) approximately 200 feet east of the western end of the project.  The bulldozer is on top of what will be the westbound lanes.  The dump truck carrying rock is on top of what will be the eastbound lanes.   
  
 
Removing Coal
(Click on photo for larger version.) Kokosing crews continue removing coal.  Today, December 28, is expected to be the last day of excavation.  After today, Kokosing crews are expected to focus on backfilling only  12/28/98 
  
 
Exposed Voids
(Click on photo for larger version.)  What you're seeing is a series of voids with the tops of the voids (mine tunnels) removed. These voids were found in the westbound lanes about 200 feet east of Kisor Road.  The black mounds that remain are the pillars between the mine tunnels.   Each pillar is about 6 feet high and 8 feet wide.  It's about 22 feet between pillars.  The spaces between the pillars are mine tunnels  12/23/98 
  
 
Exposed Tunnels
(Click on photo for larger version.)  This is a different view of the same tunnels pictured above 12/23/98 
  
 
Mine Timbers
(Click on photo for larger version.)  If you look very closely inside this void found underneath the eastbound lanes approximately 250 feet east of Kisor Road, you can see the timbers that support the top of the mine void  12/23/98 
  
 
Soil Backfill
(Click on photo for larger version.)  Backfilling continues in the eastbound lanes at the far eastern end of the project  12/23/98 
  
 
Large Void
(Click on photo for larger version.)  This large void extended underneath the eastbound and westbound lanes of S.R. 32 at the intersection of Kisor Road 12/22/98 
  
 
Excavation
(Click on photo for larger version.)  Kokosing crews continue to excavate in the westbound lanes 12/17/98 
  
 
Coal Excavation
(Click on photo for larger version.)  Kokosing crews excavate coal in the eastbound lanes 12/17 
  
 
Rocky Bauer
(Click on photo for larger version.)  Project inspector Rocky Bauer peers inside one of the voids discovered underneath the westbound lanes at the western end of the project.  See the photograph below to see what Rocky saw inside the void 12/17 
  
 
Timber Mine Ties
(Click on photo for larger version.)  If you look closely at the bottom of the photograph, you can see some old timbers that were used to make rails for the mine carts that the miners used to transport coal in and out of the mines 12/17 
  
 
Backfill to West
(Click on photo for larger version.) This photo shows the view of the eastbound lanes looking toward the west.   This is a portion of the area that Kokosing crews have backfilled 12/15/98 
  
 
Backfill to East
(Click on photo for larger version.) This photo shows the view of the eastbound lanes looking toward the east.   Kokosing crews are continuing to backfill.  You can also see a dump truck hauling away excavated material from the westbound lanes while the trackhoe in the far background excavates in the eastbound lanes  12/15/98 
  
 
Void with Timber
(Click on photo for larger version.) This void was discovered underneath the eastbound lanes.  It's about 4 feet high.  If you look closely at the left side of the void, you can see the timber supporting the top of the mine 12/11/98 
  
 
Trackhoe Excavation
(Click on photo for larger version.)  The roadway started to collapse when Kokosing crews attempted to use a trackhoe to expose a mine void 12/11/98 
 

 
Steve Speakman
(Click on photo for larger version.)  In an attempt to show the relative size of the voids, Jackson County Highway Maintenance Worker Steve Speakman stands next to the void uncovered 12/9 approximately 295 feet east of the start of the project area near County Road 38.  The dump truck above the void is driving on the westbound lanes.  The void extends underneath the eastbound and westbound lanes and the median 12/9/98
 

Big Dozer
(Click on photo for larger version.)  Another size comparison...To the right of the void are a bulldozer, a trackhoe and a dump truck.   If you look very closely, you can see Kokosing employee Guy Waldron standing beside the bulldozer 12/9/98 
  
 
Excavating for Voids
(Click on photo for larger version.)  Crews dig for voids along the shoulder of the westbound lanes 12/4/98 
  
 
Big Trench
(Click on photo for larger version.)  This 18-foot-deep trench is what's left of part of the eastbound berm and driving lane after several days of excavation 12/3/98 
  
 
Beginning Excavation
(Click on photo for larger version.)  Contractor removes pavement to begin excavation of mine voids under highway surface 11/30/98

Friday, March 26, 1999
This will be the last entry for the S.R. 32 project until the final statistics for the project are released.   The project is officially complete with the exception of some seeding of the borrow areas.  The final project statistics will be provided as soon as they are available.
 
 
Wednesday, March 24--4:30 p.m.
All four lanes of S.R. 32 in Jackson County are open to traffic!
 
 
Wednesday, March 24
The seeding crew finished seeding yesterday.  ODOT officials hope to stripe the roadway today, but, so far, Mother Nature is not cooperating.  The roadway cannot be striped until the pavement is dry, and it's still raining in Jackson County.  According to ODOT Project Inspector Dave Walton, we should know by noon if striping will be possible today.  If it's too wet to stripe today, the striping will be done tomorrow, weather permitting.   After the striping is completed, ODOT officials will remove the construction barrels that are blocking the passing lanes, and the route will be reopened to four-lane traffic.
 
 
Tuesday, March 23
The seeding crew began work yesterday but did not get finished.  The crew will resume work this morning and finish the seeding today--provided that it doesn't start raining.  Striping is scheduled for tomorrow, but there's about a 50 percent chance of rain tomorrow according to local weather forecasts, so the striping might have to be delayed until Thursday.   We're still planning to reopen S.R. 32 to four lanes this week, but it's uncertain exactly when that will happen.
 
 
Monday, March 22
The seeding crew was scheduled to come in today.  If the crews finished the seeding, then only the striping remains before S.R. 32 can be fully opened to traffic.  ODOT crews are scheduled to stripe the road tomorrow, weather permitting.  However, it sounds like it might rain tomorrow, so the striping might have to be delayed.  At any rate, it looks like S.R. 32 will be opened to four lanes this week.  We'll keep you posted.
 
 
Friday, March 19
This morning, Kokosing crews are expected to remove the construction trailer from the project--another sign the project is coming to an end.  Westbound traffic is scheduled to be switched from the westbound passing lane to the westbound driving lane today to allow crews to finish sealing the concrete pavement joints.  The lane changes should have little impact on traffic.  Crews are expected to complete the joint sealing today or tomorrow.   Seeding is scheduled for Monday, and the project area should be striped Tuesday or Wednesday, weather permitting.  It still looks like the route will be reopened to four-lane traffic sometime next week.
 
 
Thursday, March 18
Kokosing crews are sealing the concrete pavement joints today.  They are expected to finish that task tomorrow after switching the westbound traffic from the westbound passing lane to the westbound driving lane.  Eastbound traffic has already been switched to the eastbound driving lane.  Kokosing crews will also remove the construction trailer from the project tomorrow. 

Crews from the subcontractor that is going to do the seeding are expected to begin seeding Monday.  Striping is scheduled for next Tuesday or Wednesday, weather permitting.  The route will be reopened to four-lane traffic sometime next week, weather permitting.
 
 
Wednesday, March 17
Eastbound S.R. 32 motorists can expect to encounter lane changes today within the construction zone.

Eastbound traffic will be switched from the eastbound passing lane to the eastbound driving lane to allow Kokosing crews to seal the concrete pavement joints in the eastbound passing lane. Westbound traffic is expected to be switched from the westbound passing lane to the westbound driving line Friday, March 19. The lane changes are expected to cause little interruption to traffic.

Crews are expected to begin seeding Friday, weather permitting.  If all goes as planned, the remaining lane restrictions will be lifted next week.
 
 
Tuesday, March 16
Crews are scheduled to pressure wash the pavement today to prepare it for the sealing of the concrete pavement joints. 

Tomorrow, crews are expected to begin joint sealing.   That process is expected to take through Friday, weather permitting.  The weather shouldn't hold up progress.  The forecast is for warm, sunny weather all week.  If all goes as planned, the route should be reopened to four-lane traffic Tuesday, March 23.
 
 
Monday, March 15
Jackson County Highway Maintenance crews have been on the project plowing the snow off the driving lanes, which are closed because of the project.  Today, Kokosing crews are expected to take away equipment they are no longer using.  Tomorrow, crews are expected to begin pressure washing the pavement to prepare it for the sealing of the concrete pavement joints.   Weather permitting, the joint sealing will be done Wednesday through Friday, which will get most of the remaining work on the project out of the way.  The contractors who will be doing the seeding and mulching may also begin seeding and mulching the median and outside shoulder by the end of the week.

If the weather forecast proves true--warm and dry for the rest of the week--the driving lanes could be reopened to traffic as soon as next Tuesday, March 23.
 
 
Friday, March 12
Sorry, no update available today.  An update will be provided Monday, March 15.
 
 
Thursday, March 11
Crews are putting up guardrail today and preparing to put up signs.  Tomorrow, weather permitting, crews could begin to clean the pavement in preparation for joint sealing.  The pavement must be clean so that the sealer will bond to it.  It's possible that crews might have time to do some crack sealing late tomorrow afternoon.  According to ODOT Materials Controller Supervisor Rocky Bauer, crews have about seven days worth of work left to do.  However, much of the work that remains requires good weather, so it's hard to determine how long it will be before the other two lanes of S.R. 32 are reopened to traffic.
 
 
Wednesday, March 10
Because of the weather, little progress will be made on the project again today.  According to ODOT Materials Controller Supervisor Rocky Bauer, the guardrail crew might bring some materials onto the project today.  If the weather is decent tomorrow, the crew might start putting up some guardrail.  There's not too much else that can be done with the weather the way it is.
 
 
Tuesday, March 9
No work on the project today.   Too much snow.
 
 
Monday, March 8
Today, Kokosing crews will be preparing for the guardrail crews to being installing guardrail tomorrow.  However, most weather forecasters are calling for a significant amount of snow tonight and tomorrow, which could delay the project.

In addition to guardrail work, Kokosing crews will also be placing rock around the outlets of the underdrains and pouring the concrete for the catch basins.

Crews still have four to five days of worth of work to seal the relief joints that were cut into the concrete driving surface.  However, they will have to wait for warmer and drier weather to do that.

The tentative plan is to have the route reopened to four-lane traffic within seven to 10 days, weather permitting.
 
 
Friday, March 5
Kokosing crews are not working today because it is still so wet.  They will likely return to the job Monday.   By Tuesday, they are expected to begin putting up the guardrail.  That's expected to take about two days to complete.  Next week they'll also be re-erecting some signs, sealing the concrete joints in the new concrete pavement, etc.

Daily reports will continue to be posted on this page as long as the project continues.
 
 
Thursday, March 4
Kokosing crews will not be working today and tomorrow.  The area is much too wet to do any type of earth work, and the snow prohibits crack sealing.  Crews are not expected to work this weekend.   If the weather is good and they do work, they will likely be crack sealing.
 
 
Wednesday, March 3--9:45 a.m.
State Route 32 in Jackson County is now open to one lane in each direction!
 
 
Wednesday, March 3
According to ODOT Materials Controller Supervisor Rocky Bauer, crews are being gathered together this morning to finish putting up the traffic control for the opening of S.R. 32.  He said everything is going as planned so far, so the route should be opened to traffic one lane in each direction by noon.  Rocky said he will notify me just as soon as the road is opened.  When I hear from Rocky, I'll post the news on this page right away.
 
 
Tuesday, March 2
The day has finally arrived.  S.R. 32 will be reopened to traffic by noon tomorrow!

The route will be reopened to traffic one lane in each direction. Eastbound motorists will be diverted into the eastbound passing lane. Westbound motorists will drive in the westbound passing lane. The eastbound and westbound driving lanes will be blocked off with construction barrels.

Crews from Kokosing Construction Company still have several tasks left to do before the eastbound and westbound driving lanes can be reopened. According to Hagen, crews will have to install guardrail, finish dressing up the shoulders and median and stripe the roadway. The other two lanes of the route are expected to be reopened to traffic within the next two weeks. Seeding and mulching will be done during drier weather.

Even though the route will be reopened to traffic, motorists will be traveling through a construction zone, so they are advised to drive with extra caution.  Motorists should be especially careful to avoid the shoulders of the roadway because they are extremely soft.

When State Route 32 reopens tomorrow, Kisor Road will be open. However, motorists traveling eastbound on Kisor Road cannot turn eastbound on State Route 32 because the crossover at the intersection is not complete. For the same reason, motorists traveling eastbound on State Route 32 will not have access to Kisor Road. Westbound State Route 32 traffic turning onto Kisor Road will not be impacted. Full access to Kisor Road should be available by this weekend.

Check back tomorrow for an update on the opening of the road.
 
 
Monday, March 1
Kokosing crews are on the job today despite the cold and rainy/snowy weather.  It's hoped they will be able to finish making the connection between Kisor Road and S.R. 32 today.  They are also working feverishly on moving dirt up against the berms to create a smooth transition between the concrete berms and the edge of the roadway.  Crews will also be cleaning the pavement. 

Tomorrow crews will be working on making the repairs to the asphalt that was damaged during the project.

ODOT officials expect to open the road soon.

 

November 1998:
State Route 32
in Jackson County closed due to underground mine voids! 

Project Location Map
Click on the image above to access a larger map detailing the location and the detour route.

Monthly Journals:
March 1999
February 1999
January 1999
December 1998
November 1998