Access still hindered for Paloma Trail residents

COCHISE COUNTY, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Imagine being stranded inyour home for weeks, with no access to food or emergency services; that is what'shappening tonight for more than a hundred people in Palominas.  It all started with a monsoon storm washingout the road leading into their community.

For two weeks residents inthis housing area have been asking for help and Tucson News Now headed back tofind out what county officials are doing about it.

Every rainfall brings aflood of concerns to the community, which right now has only a crumbling walkwayleading to their community, only a portion of the road that once led into thehousing area.

The force of the waterliterally broke that heavy concrete into pieces.  The road is not maintained by Cochise County,it is the homeowner's responsibility to fix the road, which could run into thehundreds of thousands of dollars.

"Nobody has that kind ofmoney," stated Robert Schumacher a resident in the stranded community. "We'reliving paycheck to paycheck as it is."

County officials say thereare hundreds of communities like this one in Cochise County, they are unplannedsubdivisions and it is up to the homeowners to maintain their own roads; somethingthe residents should have kept in mind when moving into the area.

"I came from California soI didn't know anything," said Paloma Trail resident Marie Boston. "They didmention there was a wash to me that's a ditch I had no idea."  Boston also mentioned that she was aware theroads were resident's responsibility.  "Ihad no idea what that entailed."

Residents have used agrader to create this temporary road across the wash, but they worry it toowill be washed away in the next big storm.

One of the big concernstonight, no access to fire or sheriff's officials, in case of anemergency.

A sheriff's spokespersontold Tucson News Now that if deputies need to get out to the community, theycan get permission from local ranchers and get access through private land. Countyofficials also stated that in case of an emergency, helicopters would be ableto land in the housing area, but if an ambulance or fire truck is needed itcould be a long wait.

County officials have alsotold Tucson News Now that they are continuing to look for state grants outthere that can help in a situation like this one.  Tucson News Now also learned the local  conservation district plans to conduct astudy in the area, but all that will cost hundreds of thousands of dollars andtake time.

Right now the residentsliving here have to come up with their own solution.

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