The Imperial County Board of Supervisors on April 17 unanimously voted to establish an ad hoc committee to discuss traffic problems on Orchard Road south of Holtville and road funding issues.
The move came after Mary Helen Dollente, a Holtville-area retiree, informed the board of constant commercial big-rig truck traffic she and 26 home owners must endure all along Orchard. Dollente explained it is a safety issue since trucks sometimes park there and obstruct views endangering school children crossing at a three-way stop.
"The trucks carry hazardous materials--petroleum or propane and our houses are always shaking,
it's ruining the structural integrity of our homes," said Dollente. "Those vehicles are too heavy for Orchard Road."
She added trucks use Orchard as a shortcut to Highway 111 when destined for Los Angeles from Highway 7 that connects to the bustling Calexico East Port of Entry south of Holtville that is the area's sole border crossing for commercial vehicles.
District 3 Supervisor Mike Kelley noted the Board should be proactive and let state Assembly Member Eduardo Garcia and state Senator Ben Hueso know the county is not getting its fair share of federal road repair funds. He proposed forming an ad hoc committee to address legislators and the California Department of Transportation about road issues and to discuss the Orchard Road matter.
The entire board agreed, 5-0, to support forming the ad hoc committee.