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Crews from Cumber Construction excavated a poorly filled spot on County Road 40 Monday. (Sarah Smith / Enterprise)

County Road 40 buckles under pressure, bad fill

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news Park Rapids, 56470
Park Rapids Minnesota PO Box 111 56470

As if there wasn't enough road construction in Hubbard County, a section of County Road 40 now has a 30-foot-deep hole in it.

Ben Cumber of Cumber Construction explained the asphalt highway was starting to settle because of inadequate fill underneath and caused a dangerous dip for motorists. Cumber Construction began excavation Monday, shutting the road section east of County Road 7 down to one lane.

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As his crew dug down, they found a mass of tree limbs and branches that had been used as fill decades ago.

"They did this when they originally built the road," he said. "They'd just dump the trees in here and cover them up. That's a no-no now."

Cumber said on a gravel road the gradual tree rot and settling might not have been as noticeable since gravel gets graded frequently. But the asphalt cover on this section started dipping, becoming dangerous.

Traffic is down to one lane until the repairs can be made. The 30-foot-deep hole was filled with more substantial sand and gravel by Tuesday and will be paved over.

County Road 40 has been taking much more traffic than usual because of the Highway 34 construction. Motorists have detoured north to avoid the traffic delays.

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