Township, County Pothole Brigades Out Making Temporary Repairs

pot hole

Pot hole on New Brunswick Road.

They’re just temporary fixes, but crews from the township and Somerset County have been traveling township roads over the past week filling in potholes that seem to appear about this time of year.

The mixture of lots of moisture, then cold and warm temperatures, as we’ve had over the last several weeks, makes the perfect recipe for bone-rattling potholes, township engineer Tom Zelinek said.

Zelinek said Jan. 17 that crews from the Department of Public Works have been going out for about a week. He said the crews patrol the streets looking for potholes, but also respond to location supplied by residents.

“They’re going out on a daily basis with crews,” he said.

Some of the roads that have been treated so far include Canal and New Brunswick roads, Berry Street and DeMott Lane, he said.

The crews will continue to go out “as long as the weather allows,” Zelinek said.

County roads that have been repaired include sections of Western Canal, Bunker Hill, Griggstown Canal and South Middlebush roads and County Route 518 on Jan. 8; sections of Amwell Road and Hamilton Street on Jan. 9; sections of Elizabeth Avenue and South Middlebush and Western Canal roads and Cedar Grove Lane on Jan. 13; sand other sections of Western Canal, Bunker Hill and Griggstown Canal roads and Rt. 518 on Jan. 14, according to Vincenzo Russo, the county’s road and bridge supervisor.

Township crews are using a temporary cold patch, augmented by being stored in a hot box, Zelinek said.

“That’s better than just a cold patch,” he said. “With the hotter material, it actually binds and stays in the hole longer.”

But even that is temporary, Zelinek said.

“At this time of year, everything is temporary,” he said. In the spring and summer, he said, “they become more of a permanent patch. The material stays hotter longer, and it can mesh in” to the hole.

Residents with information about potholes can report them at the township Web site’s “Citizen Request Portal.”

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