Friday afternoon, the NC Department of Transportation reopened Galilee Road near Smithfield to traffic. A section of the two lane roadway near Packing Plant Road had been closed since a flash flood on September 1, 2020 washed out part of the roadway over Arters Branch and destroyed the metal crossline pipe. The pipe had been upgraded in the same location after Hurricane Matthew in 2016.
Two children died last September after their car was washed off the flooded roadway.
The NC DOT decided to replace the culvert with a bridge, allowing a much greater amount of water to safely flow under the roadway.
A contract was awarded in November 2020 to install the new bridge at a cost of about $1.1 million. The bridge was originally scheduled to be completed in April 2021 but reopened today ahead of schedule. The contractor also added stone on the embankment to help prevent further erosion.