Access to Boley Creek on Miss. 43N closed

Published 10:11 pm Saturday, July 28, 2007

A place where people cooled off in the water during the summer, and which became a place for mud riders to test their machines, has been closed to the public.

The Mississippi Department of Transportation has closed off access to the Hobolochitto Creek at the bridge on Mississippi 43 North, which goes over the Boley Creek near the site of the old Paul’s Pastry, which is now an Indian food restaurant. The closure is in part due to illegal dumping and to the shoulder of the highway and right-of-way being torn up by vehicular traffic and by people parking their cars on the shoulder.

“It used to be a good little place to come and go swimming,” said David Glascow, MDOT superintendent for Hancock County.

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Glascow said the trouble with illegal dumping and with cars parked on the side of the road were contributing factors to MDOT closing the area.

MDOT Area Superintendent Henderson Rettig said it is illegal for cars to park on the side of a highway since the shoulders of the roads are reserved for emergency situations, such as flat tires.

“It creates a safety hazard,” Rettig said.

Cars would park on the shoulder while people would swim or hang out at the creek.

Complaints of illegal dumping from surrounding property owners also prompted the site’s closing to the public, Glascow said. In addition, four-wheel drive vehicles were tearing up the shoulder and the right of way by running up and down it to get to and from the area where they would leave mud holes in some places, which also prompted MDOT to take action.

Work to close the site began Wednesday and was finished by Friday morning.

“No Parking” signs will be installed in the area and violators will be issued citations, Glascow said. Dump trucks will take the garbage out of the area and carry it to Central Landfill in Millard, he said.

Concrete acquired from another job site was piled into a barricade just off the highway to block vehicular from access to the creek.

Glascow said he was working in Pearl River County because Pearl River County’s MDOT superintendent was working in Hancock county.