ROGERSVILLE — The driving public who were hoping that SR 70 between Rogersville and Sneedville would be reopening this week will have to plan on taking detours for a few more months.

Mark Nagi, Community Relations Officer for the Tennessee Department of Transportation’s Region One, told the Review and Eagle on Wednesday that a massive slide on the side of Clinch Mountain following torrential rains in the early morning hours of Feb. 21, 2019, forced the closure of the road to through-traffic.

The slide, between Clinch Valley Road and SR 94, also claimed the life of a motorist whose vehicle was swept down the side of the steep embankment when the mountainside and roadbed collapsed.

“The original completion date for this slide repair project was August 15,” Nagi said. “However, our geotechnical engineers have recommended additional soil nail installation at this site. This will mean more work on this slide repair project.”

As a result, the estimated completion date has been extended to the mid- to late-fall of this year.

“We appreciate the patience of the motoring public as this important repair project continues,” Nagi said.

The detours affect about 1,554 vehicles that typically travelled that road on a daily basis prior to the slide.