A La Plata County road and bridge crew worked with contractors from Franklin Blasting & Drilling Monday to clear two large boulders from the county right of way along La Posta Road (County Road 213). The operation ended with a bang: contractors used a couple pounds of dynamite to blow the boulders into manageable chunks.
One of the boulders slid down an embankment, causing damage to one the southbound lanes on March 13. The other had been sitting there for four or five years, according to Mike Canterbury, road and bridge superintendent.
La Posta Road was closed for several hours as crews kept everyone at a safe distance during the blasting and while a crew cleared the remnants.
A drone video taken by the La Plata County Sheriff’s Office, set to the Looney Tunes theme song, shows the 8-foot by 12-foot boulder being busted into chunks.
Stan Michael, the blaster, said the exact techniques used in such operations vary depending on a number of factors and should not be attempted by anyone who is not a trained professional.
Canterbury said that while the larger boulder caused some damage to the road when it fell, the blasting occurred off to the side of the road and the debris stayed relatively contained.
A road crew spent two hours loading the debris into a dump truck before reopening the road.
County officials are warning that the melting snowpack and rainfall could cause mudslides and loosen other large objects and debris throughout the region. Drivers should be aware of these potential hazards this spring and can report road damage by calling 382-6413 or filling out a road repair request form on the county’s website.