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Daviess County Struggles With Road Damage From Amish Buggies

Daviess County is working toward installing more horse buggy lanes on their busier roads

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Many of the roads across Daviess County are gravel, but that’s starting to change.

The county recently bought a surplus paving unit to convert some of the more heavily-traveled roads to pavement. But, it’s not making the roads much smoother.

The county has a large Amish population that relies on horse-drawn buggies for transportation. And the steel horseshoes they use are hurting the roads. Daviess County is searching for a solution to prevent significant damage to its paved roads.

“We as a county can’t continue spending $1.2 million on a road and then starting to have it damaged on day one,” says Daviess County Council President Mike Sprinkle.

The highway department recently bought a surplus paving unit so it can pave more of the county’s gravel roads.

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The county also ordered some rubber horseshoes that would be less damaging, but there’s been push-back from the Amish community.

“I understand their desire to have these shoes that will grip better, which is what’s causing the problem,” Sprinkle says, “But, as the horses grip better, we are seeing the damage that the county tax payers are having to fund to repair the roads when they get damaged enough.”

Sprinkle says the county council is willing to work with the Amish community to find a solution that works for them and taxpayers.

The Amish committee plans to meet with county officials to discuss possible solutions later this summer.

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