High Grass Concerns Drivers on Wabash Valley Roads

By Katie Hargitt

Published 06/17 2014 03:20PM

Updated 06/17 2014 03:32PM

High grass along US 41
High grass along US 41/High grass along US 41
The saying goes, "Knee high by Fourth of July," but that refers to the corn in Indiana, not the grass along the highways. Grass in the medians along some portions of U.S. 41 in northern Vigo County is nearly two feet tall.
"I think it needs cut back real bad," said Judy Zigler.

But it's not safe for drivers. Zigler lives along U.S. 41 where the grass in the median continues to grow and grow and grow.

"Well it's really bad when we go out down here at the intersection," Zigler said. "You can't see either direction and luckily my vehicles are a little bit taller but some vehicles aren't and I still have trouble seeing both ways."

Zigler says there was an accident recently due to the obstructed line of vision, and soon after the Indiana Department of Transportation came to mow that portion of the highway. But not others. That's why Tom Wetnight has resorted to mowing the grass in front of his business on his own.

"If we didn't cut this at Hawthorn there would be a whole lot of wrecks. There's quite a bit anyway but there would be a lot more," said Wetnight.

Representatives from INDOT say it costs $8 million dollars each year to mow the right-of-way areas around the state. Crews near Judy Zigler's home recently put the blame for the lack of mowing on the harsh winter.

"They said that there wasn't enough money put back to cut it right now," Zigler said. "It might be a while."

There is no policy requiring the grass to be cut at a certain height.

INDOT says the grass in the medians seem to grow rapidly in the spring then tapers off. They wait until temperatures rise and growing slows in order to begin their mowing blitz.

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