Ross Township road remains closed due to landslide

Ross Township road remains closed due to landslide

ROSS TOWNSHIP, Pa. — A road that has been shut down because of a landslide in Ross Township in May will remain closed until further notice.

The slide has caused Reis Run Road to be closed where it intersects with Rochester Road since May 31.

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PennDOT said Monday the road will remain closed because the hillside continues to move.  Officials said local traffic will be permitted to the slide, but all other traffic should follwo the follwoing detours:

East of the slide

•    Follow Reis Run Road to Rochester Road.
•    Take Rochester Road northbound back to Reis Run Road.

West of the slide

•    Same detour in the opposite direction.

A man who lives above the road told Channel 11 it happened within a matter of hours.

A nightmare is the only way Jim Capes can describe the scene outside his home.

"That tree literally moved within five hours. Probably 40 feet overnight," Capes said.

That tree and the land around it are now a tangled mess on Reis Run Road down below, leaving a gaping hole about 5-feet in front of Capes' front door.

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"Right now, it's safe. What's to come? I don't know. It's gotta be addressed immediately," Capes said.

Channel 11 reached out to Ross Township and learned the municipality is not responsible for the slide, but the township did send a geotech out to take a look at the property. He drew a red line and told Capes if the crack moves past it, he'll have to go.

The township already evacuated his neighbors across the street for fear that the huge tree may finally give way, tear down power lines and fall onto their property.

"How it's still standing, I don't know," Capes said.

In the meantime, Duquesne Light has sent out a contractor to cut down the tree. PennDOT, which owns the road, said the agency is monitoring the situation and its geotech will come out Monday to assess and determine when it's safe to clear the debris.

Until then, the road remains closed, and drivers will have to take a detour. East of the slide, you'll take Reis Run Road, then take Rochester Road northbound back to Reis Run Road. The detour is the same in the opposite direction west of the slide.

Here's the area where the slide happened: