Rocks propelled by road work blasting land in neighbors' yards, - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

Rocks propelled by road work blasting land in neighbors' yards, one hits home

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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - An investigation is underway by the North Carolina Department of Transportation after a "fly rock" incident.

Crews are blasting rock to make way for Interstate 485.

Around 10 a.m. Friday, several people reported hearing an unusually loud explosion. Folks say they've heard at least 20 blasts in the past month, but never something this extreme. Anne McGraw says she was outside walking when the blast occurred. "It sounded like trees falling." The sound was actually large rocks raining down on the area.

Rocks littered the yards of at least six homes along Browne Road in North Charlotte.

A chunk of rock also ripped through the roof of the Farris' house.

"It's still hard to believe it came from that far," Lynn Farris said. She estimates the distance from her home to the blast site is at least four football fields away.

"I thought well if they came on over they'd hit me in the head," McGraw said with a laugh. Everyone is taking the incident in stride but looking back they say they're blessed no one was hurt.

"Especially the one right here at my mother's [house] just feet away from her front door. She's always out here with her flowers," Farris said. Several rocks were also found in the garden.

The family estimates one of the rocks weighs at least 10 to 15 pounds.

Farris says an employee subcontracted to do the blast work immediately told the family they'd fix the roof.

NCDOT project engineer Gary Eudy told WBTV something like this occasionally happens but usually they have safe guards, like a blast mat, in place. Eudy says there will be an investigation and blasting is suspended until they figure out how this happened. Eudy calls it a safety issue and says they're taking the incident very seriously.

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