PRAIRIEVILLE, LA (WAFB) - Some routine road work in a Prairieville subdivision has turned into a muddy nightmare for residents. Thanks to heavy rains and some unexpected geology, the neighborhood's main road is now a mass of mud and muck.
"There's no other way out of here. So, it's a big problem," said resident Rishi Vyas.
Last week, a contractor pulled up the concrete as a part of the Ascension Parish Road Package. Despite parish tests that showed the roads had a solid base, crews discovered the hard way that one 350-foot section on Park Avenue was built on something much softer.
When heavy rains poured in over the weekend, that material turned to sludge, trapping residents in mud.
"There's not a place to pass so the only place you can go is through the middle where the rain came in, where it's now mud, where people are getting stuck. I've never seen anything like this," said Vyas.
Residents say cars, truck and even a school bus have gotten bogged down. Crews have to take time out to push cars out of the mud. Many residents skipped work on Monday, unsure if their cars could make it through.
"Everybody's yards are just so messed up," said resident Brooke Roussel. "If you can make it through, you're having to drive up on everybody's yard. It's been a muddy mess for days."
The contractor tried to lay down limestone and even reclaimed asphalt to create a temporary fix. When 9News tried to ask the site supervisor what was going on, he directed the reporter to parish officials.
Ascension Parish Chief Administrative Officer Ken Dawson described the situation as "a perfect storm."
Parish engineers then came up with a new plan of laying down crushed stone in order to create a passable lane for residents. Once the weather clears, Dawson says crews will be able to clear everything out, rebuild the base and continue with the original road project. Unfortunately, he admitted that could take some time.
Until then, he says crews will work overtime to make sure residents are taken care of.
Any residents continuing to have issues are asked to call Ascension Parish Department of Public Works at 225-450-1013.