Department of Transportation officials say their number one job is keeping the public safe from rocks and other debris that could fall as a result of a big crack on the top of Rattlesnake Ridge in Union Gap. The department's Meagan Lott says on Thursday they finished placing shipping containers between the Ridge and I-82 to block the possibility of falling rocks. Lott tells KIT News if the rocks start falling the road will be closed and detours will be in place. "I-82 will close at the first sign of any rock fall. It'll be closed from Union Gap to Granger just as a precaution. People will be routed on to US 97, SR 22 and SR 223. Lott says they're hoping they won't have to do that but they're committed to keeping the public safe.
I-82 remains open as more than 20 different local, state and federal agencies continue to monitor the crack. A shelter for evacuees living near the area has been set up at the Summitview Church on south 72nd Avenue. 30 of the 50 people asked to leave remain in their homes.