Pothole season began early this year as spring temperatures in February began pushing frost out of the ground and up through roadbeds throughout Calhoun County. Road Commission crews have been out patching potholes all week and will continue until all holes are filled. The majority of the crews are using cold patch, which is a temporary pothole repair. Cold patch is the only product available for use until the asphalt plants open in April. So far this February, we’ve used about 225 tons of cold patch.
The Calhoun County Road Commission will begin utilizing both of our Dura Patchers next week. A Dura Patcher is a piece of equipment that contains hot emulsion and aggregate used for pothole repair. The Dura Patchers provide more of a permanent solution to pothole repair; however, because the Road Commission only has two pieces of such equipment, the remainder of the crew will be out filling with cold patch.
In 2010 the Calhoun County Road Commission spent over $2 million repairing potholes on over 1,300 miles of roads throughout the county. Crews work in pairs and patrol areas initiated by service requests. The average crew will place four tons (8,000 lbs) of patching material in potholes during an eight hour day. Using the average of 100 potholes per day filled by a two person crew bring the repair cost for an average pothole to $9.41 each. However, not all potholes are created equal. One recent pothole on 7 Mile Road near N Drive S took nearly 1.5 tons (3,000 lbs) of fill.
Potholes are created as frost in the ground is heaving upward under the road surface. Actual holes are created in the road surface as the frost pushes the road surface upward creating a void in the road surface and down into the roadbed. Potholes can grow very large in a short period of time. This is where your help is needed, by continuing to report potholes to the Road Commission by calling us at 800-781-5512, or you can click here to complete an online service request.
Citizen reporting is necessary as road crews are not able to patrol the entire county and potholes can form and grow very rapidly.