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Published April 28 2011

Cass County sheriff asks public to heed road closures after barricades pushed aside

FARGO – The Cass County Sheriff’s Office is asking the public to pay “strict attention” to road closures after some barricades were found moved off to the side so people could drive on roads the sheriff’s office says may still be unsafe even though they’re no longer flooded.

In one instance, individuals pushed the barricades to the side of Highway 81 south of Cass County 16 to allow local traffic to drive on the road. The road is closed because water is going under its surface and the shoulders are washed away, the sheriff’s office stated in a news release.

The integrity of the road surface isn’t known and needs further evaluation by engineers, the sheriff’s office said, adding it is patrolling that area and will issue citations for driving around barricades.

Someone also has been pushing aside barricades on Highway 81 south of Harwood, which is closed for roughly a mile for the same reason.

County engineers visit the sites every morning and replace the barricades, but within hours, sheriff’s deputies have noticed the signs have been moved aside and cars are using the road as if it were open.

“This is a danger to the vehicle occupants because of the washouts under the road surface,” the news release stated.