'It's a total disaster' - Rhea Co. residents deal with Hwy 68 closure

A part of Highway 68 remains closed in Rhea County as crews repair the road slide. (Image: NewsChannel 9 SkyCam)

The Highway 68 road closure in Rhea County is causing some residents to take drastic measures to get to where they need to go.

Gary McCambell lives right above where the road is closed. His wife works in Cleveland. He says the closure adds about two hours of driving to her day.

"She's decided to go live with her mother until this catastrophe is over."

Gary has owned property here for decades. He says that stretch of road has caused problems before. Like others in the area, he wishes something was done before the road slide.

"It's a total disaster, like I said it's an inconvenience for me I'm retired, but for my wife and families here on the mountain it's horrible."

We also met a group of fishermen from Kentucky trying to make their way to Watts Bar Lake Wednesday afternoon. They were caught off guard by the road block.

We showed them a picture of the road slide, and how a crack turned into chunks of the road now gone.

"It's a good thing we didn't go down through there with boats," Prentice Young said.

The detour will add about an extra hour to their trip, but they're not deterred.

"We are on vacation this week so we just take the worst and hope for the best."

TDOT surveyors were out working Wednesday. TDOT says it could take several weeks before the road is back open.


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