Rain washes out rural road, leaves residents stranded

South Paloma Trail (Source: Marie P. Boston)
South Paloma Trail (Source: Marie P. Boston)

COCHISE COUNTY, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Overnight rains in Cochise County caused flooding that washed out a road, leaving several residents in the community of Palominas stranded.

After rains last night washed out a major roadway to the community of Palominas, at least 30 residents are unable to leave the area for necessities. 

A photo of the washed out road, South Paloma Trail, was sent in by a viewer.

The Cochise County Sheriff's Office has said this road is not a county maintained road, and this area has trouble every monsoon.

Marie Boston, the viewer who alerted Tucson News Now to this situation, stated the road had been deteriorating for the last week or so.

The stranded residents cannot cross the road, and this a major problem for the small community of Palominas.  Residents need that road to get out, to get groceries, or gas.  There is no alternative route.

Several roads remain closed in Cochise County tonight, including a portion of Hereford Road that was washed away by storms Wednesday night.

The San Pedro River has been raging and rising today.

At least 30 families are stranded in the community behind the South Paloma Trail in Cochise County.

"It was just like thunderstorms, lightning. Like somebody was bombarding us with military shells."

When the rain stopped, this is what was left of the road leading up to their homes: a narrow strip of concrete, not very stable.

"It's not a county road, so can't get help from them," said stranded resident Marie Boston.

This is in fact a private road. Marie Boston has been pleading with the county for help for six years.

"They told me that for them to take over maintenance, we would have to bring it up to code and that will cost $350,000.

County officials say border patrol officials are building a road on the other side of this community that will take them through Naco.

"That's 45 minutes versus five minutes."

The last time this happened, residents say the border patrol came out to fix the road. They wanted faster access to the border and they're hoping someone steps up to help.

"We're stranded," Boston said. "We can't get out. Can't get groceries. God forbid there's a medical emergency. They could fly a helicopter but if there's a fire out you can't get fire trucks out here."

Residents are pleading with Cochise County officials for help, saying at this point, it's a safety issue.

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