Small landslide near Rockaway Beach

The city has imposed a vehicle weight restriction on Rockaway Beach Drive after a small landslide undermined part of the roadway.

See the city’s announcement below.

Due to recent heavy rains, the City of Bainbridge Island imposed a vehicle weight restriction of 24,000 pounds (12 tons) on Rockaway Beach Drive, effective Dec. 15, 2010. The restriction applies to that portion of Rockaway Beach Drive between Bill Point Court to Rockaway Bluff Road and is in place until further notice.

The City’s weather station at SR305 and Winslow Way recorded 3.8 inches of rain in a 24-hour period by noon on Sun, Dec. 12. At approximately 10:30 am that morning, a Public Works crew observed a small slide that undermined a segment of roadway shoulder on Rockaway Beach Drive. Temporary traffic barricades were placed along this road segment as a precautionary measure.

On Mon, Dec. 13, a geotechnical consultant assessed the condition of the undermined roadway shoulder and larger slope embankment. The consultant recommended on Tues, Dec. 14, that the City place a weight restriction on the roadway and relocate the existing concrete traffic barriers further inland away from the undermined roadway shoulder.

At this time, a right-of-way permit is required for vehicles over 24,000 pounds to access Rockaway Beach Drive. Contact the City of Bainbridge Island Public Works Department two business days in advance to obtain a permit.

“The weight restriction and relocated concrete traffic barriers will provide an additional margin of safety to our driving public,” said Public Works Director Lance Newkirk. Newkirk urges drivers to “exercise extra care and caution when driving this road segment, as the northbound driving lane is slightly narrower than before.”

The City is currently soliciting qualifications from consultants for the design of repairs to the failing slope embankment adjacent to this roadway segment.