BRYSON CITY – A band of heavy rains late Friday night, July 31 started a mudslide that closed U.S. 19/74 in the Nantahala Gorge.
N.C. Department of Transportation officials arrived on the scene, about three miles west of the Nantahala Outdoor Center, after 9 p.m. and immediately closed the road for the safety of traveling public.
The closure is expected to last through most of Saturday, Aug. 1 while crews clear and inspect the area.
During the closure, the detour will direct westbound traffic from U.S. 19/74 to N.C. 28 to Stecoah, N.C. 143 to Robbinsville and U.S. 129 to Topton and U.S. 74. Eastbound traffic will go to Robbinsville and then Stecoah en route back to U.S. 19/74. Visitors may still access the Nantahala Outdoor Center from the east.
Engineers will divert the excess rain down a ditch and through pipe to prevent the water from washing out a section of the road. NCDOT crews mobilized six tandem dump trucks, a mid-sized excavator and one low-boy truck to handle debris removal which will start at sunrise on Saturday.
– N.C. Dept. of Transportation release