Letter: The DOT must do better

Graphic by Lori Deaton

Thanks to Jay S. Gertz and Charmaine Strong for their letter concerning the “swath of death” as I call it, along River Road (N.C. 251) [“‘No’ to roadside herbicide spraying,” Sept. 26, Xpress].

I took and posted pictures of the eyesore on Facebook over the summer. I, too, felt extreme concern for the river and pollinators. Wild honeybees have disappeared from my flowering fruit trees in the spring over the last few years. I live in Alexander and drive 251 to Asheville to work. The swath is a good 6-8 feet wide on the cliff side and goes down toward the river on the other. They even sprayed directly above a horse barn. If that were my place, I’d be livid.

Whatever the DOT sprayed with, it was superlethal, leaving a brown/gray band all along the road for miles. Only now, months later, are a few things starting to grow back. So whatever they used to kill all plant life so effectively for the whole summer can’t possibly be good for the river. We also have enough problems with rock and mudslides. And it’s just plain ugly. I have never seen the like in the 28 years I have lived out here. In a time when pollinators are in decline and environmental degradation high, surely the shredding mower can’t be that much more trouble (I hate that thing too, by the way). It hurts my heart to see this. The DOT must do better.

— Troy Amastar


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4 thoughts on “Letter: The DOT must do better

  1. Jason

    Actually, the chemicals used are fine for use around water despite what your liberal friends tell you. Science is a neat thing. You should do your own research before just assuming everybody is destroying the world.

    • BRO

      where is your evidence Jason? If you can’t provide any – and since you have no idea as to what was sprayed – you should probably just stay quiet.

      • jason

        Where is your evidence that what was sprayed was so deadly? I can almost guarantee it was glyphophate, and there is very limited scientific evidence that it has any harm on humans, aquatic life or terrestrial life…except in California where science doesn’t matter. You should do some reading BRO and quit listening to your liberal friends.

        • BRO

          I actually have had conversations with people at the DNR, and have read quite a bit. Most chemicals that destroy vegetation are not good for you to drink, hence the problem entering the water system. On top of that, chemical makers always say it is safe – until decades of research show that it is not.

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