Renovations approved for dangerous, busy Bryan County highway

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BRYAN COUNTY, OK -- Drivers along a major Bryan County highway will soon have a smoother ride, now that a million dollar renovation project has gotten the green light.

County Commissioners finalized plans to overhaul Old Caddo Highway, which they say is plagued by potholes, bumps and uneven surfaces.

Jacob Boyd, who lives along the highway, said the dangers of this roadway are personal.

"A couple of my friends died from it," he said. "They just hit the side of the concrete embankments and that's all she wrote."

Boyd lives just outside of Caddo. He sees accidents all the time resulting from the poor road conditions.

"The potholes and everything for farm trucks - [renovations are] deeply needed," he said. "They've had more hay bales and everything fall off the side of their trucks than anything I've ever seen."

He's one of the many residents along the road happy to finally see needed improvements in the works.

Bryan County Commissioner Jay Perry said they received $1.5 million from the federal government to renovate the highway, administered through O-DOT.

"This is a lifesaver," Perry said. "There is no way Bryan County would ever have the funding to do a project like this, no way."

Old Caddo Highway, also known as Old Highway 69/75, is one of the most traveled in the county.

"You're talking about, the school districts have to use these roads, first responders have to use these roads, the mail has to use these roads," he said.

And it should help school districts reduce costs for bus repairs, he said.

"And if you beat them to pieces every year or two on a county road, you've got to buy a new bus," he said.

Boyd, who said his car is no match for the potholes, describes the project as a relief.

"Because there's no need to hop on the highway when I need to go where I need to go just on the old highway right here. So it'll help out a lot," he said.

Construction will run from the Blue River north to the Atoka county line, Perry said. They'll put it out for bids in the spring.

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