Magnets used to pick up 30 pounds of nails on Cache Road

Magnets used to pick up 30 pounds of nails on Cache Road

CACHE, Okla._About a dozen flat tires are being blamed on 30 pounds of roofing nails that spilled onto Cache Road Monday night.

The Cache Police Department says a contractor was driving through town when the nails accidentally spilled out of the back of his truck. More than 1,000 nails were found all over the road and in ditches over a four-mile stretch.

"We were very surprised. We were shocked actually because in a small town, nothing like this really happens," Sonya Tahchawwickah said.

Tahchawwickah says she and her niece were driving home and were curious about all the police walking along the road.

"We just stopped to see if they needed any help with anything. They looked like they were bending over picking up coins or something," Tahchawwickah explained.

Once they found out about the nails, she says with some duct tape and quick thinking, they figured out a way to help.

"We have industrial magnets for our welder. We just decided to attach them to our broom poles here and you can see I used duct tape, which I think duct tape works for everything, and we just thought we would go along and see how many we could pick up. So, we did and we just walked along the ground and snatched them right up," Tahchawwickah said.

She says she picked up about 150 nails in the hour and a half they spent helping. From small magnets to large oversized magnets, they got their full use picking up nails. The Comanche County Western District even pitched in with a larger, oversized magnet of their own.

Kenny Kinder, Comanche County foreman, says the magnet is used to pick up nails off the road, but not in such a high number.

"We have some roads that get a lot of garbage truck traffic and people taking shingles to the landfills and a lot of them fall off. On those roads, we put in on a grater," Kinder explained.

Kinder and four of his workers spent more than four hours Monday night and Tuesday morning running the high powered magnet over Cache Road.

"We have never had a whole roadway covered in nails from one city to the next. Never experienced that before," Kinder said.

Cache Fire Chief Dale Winham saw the magnet on his way to work, although it was too late.

"When I topped the hill at Crater Creek and Cache Road, I saw the truck with the magnet and I was a little concerned about why they were doing that and I found out real quick," Winham said.

Winham became one of the unlucky dozen or so who received a flat tire while driving to work Tuesday morning.

"Luckily, I only had one tire with one nail. It could have been worse," Winham said.

Even though patching his tire only cost about $15, he says he hopes this isn't something that happens again.

Crews have been working tirelessly picking up all the loose nails. People should continue be careful driving along Cache Road until all of the nails can be picked up.

The contractor realized he'd lost the nails when he pulled into a convenience store in Cache and noticed the trail of nails on the road. He also stayed to help pick them up.