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Mail delivery halted because road is in bad shape

Sunrise Acres is one road, but it's really two. There's the paved section and the dirt section. People living along the dirt part are no longer getting mail.

STOKESDALE, N.C. — Louise Tilley has a problem. The road she lives on is becoming more and more difficult to drive. This past winter and recent rains are taking a toll on the dirt road.

About 50 to 60 homes are on the one-mile road, but only about half of those living there have this problem. The road is partially paved and partially dirt, and Tilley lives on the dirt portion.

“It’s terrible. You don’t know if you are going to get in or out,” Tilley said.

About 20 – 30 homeowners are in the same predicament Tilley is, and the issue got a lot worse. The US Postal Service recently notified people living on that stretch of dirt road that it will no longer be delivering the mail until the road is repaired or easier to drive on.

“I would just like to have the road fixed; we pay taxes, I don’t know what (state) doing with our tax money,” Eddie Byrd said.

People living on this stretch of road have reached out to the state for assistance, but the state said it is a private road and must be fixed before the state will take it over.

The problem residents have is one section was paved by the state in 1992 but only because it was listed as public use back in 1961. Then, it was added to the state system in 1988.

One section of the dirt road was listed as private in 1985, and the general statute requires subdivision roads recorded after 1975 to be paved before they can be added to the state-maintained system.

“I just don’t think it right, the way state won’t help us,” Louise Tilley said.

The other concern is with garbage collection. Tilley said residents will be notified if the road continues to degrade, the garbage collection may stop because the trucks won’t be able to access the road.

“They say the roads are too bad and messy to turn around at the end (of the road),” Tilley said. “Right now, they are having to use my driveway to turn around.”

Tilley purchased a mailbox and stuck it in the ground at the end of the paved section about a half-mile from her house. The other option would be to pick it up at the post office.

“It’s just not right,” Tilley said.

There is hope that mail delivery will resume now that the weather has improved and some of the homeowners are working to fix the potholes and ruts.

Some of the homeowners are also trying to figure out if anything can be done when it comes to some of the homeowners not maintaining the section of road in front of their homes. Tilley said maintaining the road is required and part of the agreement when the homes were purchased.

News 2 will continue to follow this story and bring you any updates when it happens.

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