I-40 rockslide cleanup "partially complete"

COCKE COUNTY, Tenn. (WVLT) -- One lane of I-40 West reopened this weekend after construction crews successfully removed a 1500-ton boulder that threatened to fall on the highway.

After removing the boulder, crews were able to move on to Phase Two of the operation, which they expect to begin in March, according to a TDOT spokesperson. Phase Two is expected to be much more extensive, requiring crews to stabilize the rest of the slope.

TDOT plans to leave one lane of the Interstate open until Phase Two begins. After it starts, the agency hopes to keep at least one lane open while repairs are completed.

The North Carolina Dept. of Transportation was already able to clear a smaller rockslide which happened 10 miles from last Tuesday's slide in Cocke Co. and seven miles inside the North Carolina border.

Traffic is now reportedly flowing smoothly on that stretch of the highway.

Phase one of TDOT's effort to clean up a rock slide in Cocke County is complete.

All debris was cleared up on Saturday, and early Sunday morning one lane west-bound was reopened near mile marker 451.

Drivers are warned to be cautious while driving through the area due to the fact that one lane is still closed.

TDOT says phase two of the project will start in late March and will be more "extensive."

Crews will work to stabilize the remaining slope.

All work was finished on clearing a rock slide at mile marker 7 west-bound in North Carolina. That was done on Saturday.

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