CONTRA COSTA COUNTY, Calif. (KRON) — Proceed with caution on roadways. Not so much because of flooding in this break in the weather, but instead due to potholes popping up or expanding following the storms.
From 7 a.m. through the afternoon, they are tending to one pothole after another. Contra Costa County Public Works crews identify and fill up potholes now that flood waters have washed off the roads.
“We’re eliminating hazards along our roadways to make them safe,” said Contra Costa County Public Works Maintenance Division Manager Chris Lau.
On Thursday, this crew focused on Bixler Road in Discovery Bay. Lau says some of these potholes are new while others are old and expanded following the storms.
“We’re using an asphalt material called cutback. It’s a material that is with rock and oil, filling the pothole and compacting it and rolling it,” Lau said.
This work is considered routine maintenance, but operations pick up during the wintertime when the rain weakens the roads.
“The worst enemy for our roadways is water,” Lau said. “Water can infiltrate into our cracks and crevices in our pavements, and go down into the foundation of the road and cause softening of our base. And, when vehicles roll over it, it constantly pumps and compacts the roadway and deteriorates our roadway.”
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Lau says cutback is a temporary fix that should last through the winter season or longer.
More permanent repairs will be made when crews follow up.
“If you see a pothole, try to avoid them. They can cause damage to your vehicle. And, so that’s the best course of action is to try to avoid them,” Lau said.
During the season, Lau says hundreds if not thousands of potholes will be repaired countywide.