ROAD PATROL: LEATHERBARK ROAD

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SMITHVILLE, W.Va. – Just off Route 16 near the town of Smithville sits Leatherbark Road, a one-lane gravel road that resident Glenn Jones said has been neglected for more than a decade.

“We get a lot of potholes, and me and somebody else will try to fill them up because it’s tearing up their vehicles,” Jones said. “Go to the state, and I get absolutely no response at all.”

Jones said potholes, slips, overhanging brush and general neglect are wreaking havoc on vehicles and wearing down the road past its breaking point.

“And it’s really getting to be worse,” Jones said. “I know it isn’t as bad as some of the roads in West Virginia, but why would you wait until it gets extremely bad, when it’s fixable right at this point in time.”

Jones and others have been taking maintenance into their own hands, by filling potholes and cutting back brush, and resident Sheryl Bush has gotten a number of residents and drivers who use the road to sign a petition asking for the state’s help.

“I told him one day, if we don’t put a petition up, nobody is going to do anything about it,” Bush said. “So I said, we’ll get a petition up, I had my son draw the papers up, we had everybody to sign it, so maybe they’ll do something about it.”

12 News reached out to the District 3 D.O.H. office to find out if there are plans to work on Leatherbark Road but as of this report, we’ve yet to hear back from the department.

Residents like Jones and Bush said they just want to see something done before the worst happens.

“Somebody getting killed, really bad, going over the hill or something,” Bush said.

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