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Crews keep up with potholes

PATCHING POTHOLES: Josh Roseberry, city of Huntington street department employee, patches a pothole Monday afternoon on Fruit Street by Huntington University.

By JENNIFER PERYAM - jperyam@h-ponline.com

As snow melts, roads with potholes in Huntington city and county begin to show and have the potential to cause damage to vehicles.

Bob Caley, city services director, said the city’s street department employees began patching the holes at the end of last year.

“Usually, people will report the potholes and we are out quite a bit and see them. Wherever they pop up, we go and fix them,” Caley said.

There are two city crews that are currently being sent out to address the pothole situation on the north and south sides of town. The east and west ends will be addressed as well.

There are two trucks and four people doing the work to fill the potholes.

The city street department uses a cold patch asphalt solution to fill the holes at this time of year. Hot mix asphalt is used in the summertime. Then, propane heaters keep the mixture hot and a roller is used to pack down the mix.

“Potholes pop up all the time. We do every city street and patch them,” said Caley.

He said the goal is to get the pothole filled in so it stays.

“We are out all the time looking for potholes and can’t see every street in town so that is why it’s important to contact us,” Caley said.

To report potholes in the city email streetdepartment@huntington.in.us or call the street department at 260-356-4720 anytime and leave a message. Another option is to visit the city website, huntington.in.us, click on the the request service tab.

Josh Roseberry has been a city of Huntington street department employee for five years. He said pothole patching is a never ending job.

He used a shovel Monday afternoon to patch potholes on Fruit Street by Huntington University. Other streets he patched that day were on Freedom and Division Streets and College Avenue.

On Tuesday, streets where potholes were filled included Henry, Charles and Salamonie Streets.

“Every time we get the potholes filled, we get snow. When the snow plows are out, the blades pull the mixture out and we have to refill it,” Roseberry said.

He said it is important to patch potholes to protect vehicle tires, suspension and rims. 

Tom Wall, Huntington County commissioner, said the commissioners have conducted road surveys of county roads.

“We keep a regular list of what repairs we’ve made to roads and bridges,” Wall said.

A repair list is made of roads that need to be repaired.

When addressing potholes, a county work crew uses a Total Patcher machine that goes behind trucks and heats up tar.

“If a pothole has water in it, the machine can be used to get the water out and the pothole is able to be fixed,” Wall said.

Wall said it is not just the public who report potholes, but also county highway employees who make lists and bring it into their supervisors.

“With the freezing and thawing in Indiana, a road can be nice one week and then horrible the next,” Wall said.

He said it is important to repair the streets to protect investments in vehicles.

To report a pothole on county roads, call the Huntington County Highway Department at 260-358-4881.