State Route 7 reopens in Maury County

State Route 7 reopens in Maury County (Image 1)

State Route 7 near Santa Fe reopened Wednesday following the completion of a bridge over a portion of the roadway that was destroyed by floodwaters in May of 2010.

Tennessee Department of Transportation Commissioner John Schroer joined Federal Highway Administration and state and local leaders in Maury County for a special dedication ceremony Wednesday afternoon.

The roadway has been closed since the historic flood triggered a massive landslide.

Jerry Oakley remembers that day well.

“It was just like I was going over a roller coaster. It went whoosh! Then my stomach came up,” Oakley told Nashville's News 2.

The Maury County resident says he drove on the highway just moments before it fell in.

“I didn't know what in the world happened.  I didn't come back,” said Oakley.

Heavy rains saturated the ground below the pavement, causing two sections of the roadway to collapse and slide down a steep embankment.

The two landslide areas involved approximately 1,500 feet of roadway and in some places, the road sank 20 feet below its original elevation.

While the $6 million bridge was built, traffic on SR 7 was detoured onto Old State Route 7 though the town of Santa Fe.

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