City Gets Early Start on Pothole Repairs
The City is permanently repairing potholes earlier than usual using the new infrared road repair equipment introduced in the fall. The equipment is being put to the test with its first winter repairs this week as daytime temperatures are expected to warm up.
“Through winter, we repair potholes with a cold mix asphalt that isn’t as durable as the hot material available to us through spring and summer,” says Brandon Harris, Director of Roadways & Operations. “The infrared technology generates new hot asphalt using recycled pavement recovered from old, failed road surfaces and is effective when temperatures are above -10C.”
At this time of year melting snow gets into cracks and seams, weakening the road as it freezes and thaws on a daily basis. Pothole occurrences are typically at their highest between March and April, which is a challenge to manage without access to hot mix asphalt.
“If we can properly repair the cracks and seams with hot asphalt before the snow melts, high traffic streets should remain strong and smooth through spring,” says Harris.
The City purchased one machine for a pilot study to extend the permanent pothole repair season when hot asphalt is not available. If this pilot study is successful, three more infrared pothole patchers will be added to the fleet.