Staff photos courtesy of Albert Rukwaro
With snow and ice, and temperatures fluctuating from the 40’s to sub zero, potholes sprout up overnight.
County and city crews keep busy.
Trying to keep potholes to a minimum is a priority for city staff who tries to be proactive in identifying and responding to potholes.
On inclement weather days staff develops a pothole list. Arterial roadways are checked first, followed by residential roads.
Typically, a repair crew is dispatched once a week, depending on the workload. All pothole repairs are to be permanent, using hot mix asphalt unless otherwise directed by a foreman or supervisor.
It’s not uncommon to see crews in bright vests shoveling asphalt into holes and tamping it down, but there is an exact method to what they do.
According to Gardner guidelines, the procedures are as follows:
• Set up a work zone in accordance with Part VI of the MUTCD manual.
• Square up the sides of the hole with either a skid steer milling head or a jackhammer.
• Remove the material until a firm base is achieved (minimum of two inch depth).
• The pothole must be free of all debris, water and broken asphalt. Blow out fine particles with air tools.
• Apply tack coat to bottom and sides of the hole and allow it to cure.
• Fill with asphalt to the proper height to allow for a smooth surface once compacted.
• Compact the asphalt with either a vibratory plate compactor or a vibratory roller.
• The work area should be inspected at the end of each day to assure that the site is clean and that all the tools and equipment have been picked up.
• When the work is completed, the work zone is removed.