The Williams City Council has decided the road damage from heavy trucks is a burden the city can no longer afford.
The City Council voted 5-0 on May 15 to introduce an ordinance to ban trucks on the northern portion of Husted Road, where floodwaters have made the road more vulnerable to damage.
The ordinance amending the city’s municipal code dealing with truck routes could be finalized on June 19 and would go into effect mid-July, officials said.
Williams City Administrator Frank Kennedy said the heavy trucks that use Husted Road have created potholes, ruts, and pavement deterioration to the point of where the city has had to close portions of the road twice in the past four years because it created dangerous conditions for other motorists.
“The current condition of the southbound lane, specifically between Highway 20 and E Street, is poor at best,” Kennedy said.
Kennedy said with the road in such bad condition, allowing trucks on the road during harvest season could pose a greater risk to motorists.
“We anticipate quite a bit more damage on that road,” he said.
With Husted Road from Highway 20 and E Street off the truck route, tractor drivers coming from Colusa would have to use Lone Star Road to Abel Road and then on to Husted, or stay on Highway 20 to Interstate 5, city officials said.
“It’s a minor inconvenience, but as we’ve noted in previous demonstrations, a truck – fully loaded – does 10,000 times the amount of damage as a single vehicle or car,” Kennedy said. “We want to eliminate that damage.”
While the city repaired some section of roadway on Husted, not all the damage caused by trucks has been repaired. Part of the problem, officials said, is that the road has water seepage from both sides of the street, making it an unsuitable structure to tolerate heavy truck traffic to begin with.
“This road is literally underneath mush, particularly after a wet year,” said Councilman John Troughton. “It will never dry out.”
While closing that portion of Husted won’t fix the roadway, they hope the closure will allow the city to preserve it.
“It’s well overdue closing that section because the trucks cause lots of damage,” said Councilman Roberto Mendoza.
City officials said the lower end of Husted would remain a truck route, and not be affected by the change to the municipal code. ■