Lettiere announces $15 million
spring roadway repair program
(Secaucus) - The New Jersey Department of Transportation is ready to take on spring pothole season and road damage caused by the severe winter with 100 road crews, six special “pothole killer” trucks, paving contracts, and a new online reporting system, under a $15 million initiative announced today by Transportation Commissioner Jack Lettiere.
“The DOT has zero tolerance for snow or potholes on our state highways,” said Lettiere, at a press conference at the DOT’s Secaucus maintenance yard. “We will get after potholes once they start to appear and keep working until the job is done. We also intend to quickly award resurfacing contracts for badly damaged stretches of road.
The DOT is prepared to commit all of its 100 road crews to fill potholes and make permanent patches, and award contracts for major roadway repairs and to repave entire stretches of roads that were badly damaged during the winter, said Lettiere. To help the DOT keep on top of repairs, the public can report potholes either by calling tollfree: 1-800-POTHOLE, or by logging on to the DOT’s website at: http://www.njdot.nj.gov.
Repairs will be done on weekends and during evening hours, as in recent weeks, to minimize disruptions to traffic flow.
Potholes are created by major fluctuations in temperatures that cause moisture in roadways to freeze and thaw, breaking up the pavement. Such temperature changes typically occur in the spring as days become warmer, but temperatures drop below freezing at night.
The DOT crews will fill potholes the old-fashioned way – by shoveling asphalt into the craters, and with the use of automated “pothole killer” trucks that require just a pair of workers to make repairs. A half dozen of the trucks will be used statewide, each capable of putting down three tons of patch a day.
For sections of roadway that were badly damaged during the winter, the DOT will call in paving contractors to make major repairs or resurface the roadway, said Lettiere.
The DOT thus far this winter has poured 600 tons of asphalt into potholes across the state as temporary repairs until the warmer temperatures allow for permanent repair work. The 600 tons of asphalt was used to fill an estimated 1,500 to 2,000 potholes. Much of the work was required when record snowfalls and heavy rains were followed by a brief warming trend.
Lettiere said the new online reporting system will make it easier for motorists to report potholes on state highways. Motorists can fill in a report online detailing where they found potholes and the message will forwarded electronically to the appropriate regional maintenance office. Both the toll-free 800 line and the new online reporting system are for state highways only; potholes found on county roads or municipal streets should be reported to local officials.