Johnson Co. road incapacitated by 'precariously' hanging tree overhead

Photo: KYTC District 12 Facebook
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JOHNSON, Ky. (WKYT) - The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet has issued an emergency shutdown of KY 321/KY 40 because a tree is hanging “precariously” over the highway.

Chief District Engineer of Highway District 12 Mary Westfall-Holbrook ordered the immediate shutdown to take affect at 3 p.m. Thursday.

“I cannot in good conscience put people under this,” Westfall-Holbrook said. “It is just too dangerous.”

The closed portion of the road is between James S. Trimble Boulevard and Southside Freewill Baptist Church.

The uprooted tree is a product of last night’s microburst that caused damages across Johnson County.

Westfall-Holbrook estimated it would take about 24 hours before workers could dismantle the tree and let it drop on the highway below, leaving the road closed through the night.

“They will start first thing in the morning. As you might imagine, tree cutters are quite busy in Paintsville today,” Westfall-Holbrook said.

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