Letter to the Editor: Let’s do some math about the proposed gravel mine

Rural residents Barb Hickey and Tom Stumpf do some arithmetic on the number of trucks that might drive past their home.

Six hundred trucks per day on local roads. Let’s say during daylight/work hours, say 10 hours total, that’s 60 per hour on our roads, or one per minute; perhaps more than 60 counting return trips.

Being generous, if trucks travel outbound in two directions, one every two minutes.

Hmmm—how do you even begin to mitigate that level of disruption on agricultural use, residential trips, commuting, lifestyle, air quality, and premature degradation of the road surface itself, etc.?

We live on 464th, south of Enumclaw, a rural road that parallels Highway 410 and also the Foothills Trail Trail. Until about three years ago our two lane rural road was populated with tractors, walkers, bicyclists, children, horses, personal hay trucks etc.

When work on the White River Fish Hatchery began, dump trucks filled with gravel and waste products constructing the Hatchery ran down the road. Now with the hatchery complete, we have huge noisy semi-trucks at about 15-minute intervals running down and back on our road during the spring-summer spawning season transporting fingerlings around the dam. Although the truckers do try to slow down and are generally are polite, impatience by a single trucker who was asked to wait while heavy farm equipment was being unloaded caused an accident involving horses and farm equipment.

We suspect original plans for mitigation probably claimed that the trucks would use Highway 410 but plans changed to the more rural, less trafficked parallel rural route for convenience.

With this personal experience over the last several years I can say with certainty that it’s not worth any amount of revenue to Plateau towns or other county agencies to allow this mine to operate.

Please stand together to protect our remaining agricultural and multi-use Open Spaces in King County.

Barb Hickey and Tom Stumpf