Facts about potholes in Columbus
(Posted Jan. 26, 2011)
Through Jan. 23, city of Columbus pothole repair crews have fixed 4,233 potholes this month.
In comparison, pothole repair crews fixed 8,653 potholes during all of January 2010, and 3,485 potholes in all of January 2009. The number of potholes repaired and the severity of the weather are closely related, so pothole totals for any given month will vary from year to year.
The city of Columbus patches potholes on city streets and parts of state routes 315, 33 and 104 that are in the city.
ODOT is responsible for patching potholes on I-70, I-71, I-270 and I-670.
Columbus’ pothole patching crews are responsible for 6,348 lane miles of roadway.
This effort is measured in lane miles because potholes can occur in each lane of a roadway. A lane mile is defined as one mile of roadway multiplied by the number of lanes in the roadway. The process for patching potholes begins two different ways:
•Residents contact 311 (call 311 or 645-3111) to notify the city of the location of a pothole. The locations are then forwarded to the Department of Public Service to be scheduled for patching; or
•Separate from, and in addition to, 311 requests, Department of Public Service crews are routinely deployed to locate and patch potholes. These deployments are proactive standard practice that works in tandem with 311 requests to find and patch potholes.
Potholes are typically patched within three days after a service request is filed with 311 to do so. This standard may go beyond three days because of: a very large volume of potholes being reported; or a snow, ice or rain storm prohibits pothole patching
Columbus’ pothole patching crews are responsible for 227 square miles, much more than their counterparts in other Ohio cities:
•Cleveland: 82 square miles
Columbus’ pothole repair crews are responsible for more than 6,300 lane miles of roadway, more than any other Ohio city (or, 2,053 linear miles, approximately the distance between Columbus and Las Vegas):
During winter, hot patching potholes is most effective above freezing (32°).
However, hot patch, at 300 degrees, does not bond well with the dramatically colder pavement in cold winter weather, including cold temperatures above freezing.
The hot patch shrinks away from, and does not conform to, the surrounding asphalt and the contours inside the pothole.
Because hot patch does not bond well with a cold pothole and pavement, it is like cold patch - a temporary fix. Therefore, cold patch is typically used during winter months.
Cold patch is less expensive ($75/ton) than hot patch purchased during the winter from a private vendor ($100/ton).
Cold patch is a temporary fix designed to repair potholes until they can be hot patched during warmer weather in the spring and summer if the cold patched hole reopens.
Lifespan of a cold patch varies and is affected by traffic volume and speed of the roadway where the cold patch is made.
Columbus does have a limited supply of hot patch that it produces in an asphalt recycling machine.The recycled asphalt is the waste asphalt when a street is torn up for resurfacing or reconstruction.
Columbus pothole repair crews fixed 34,555 potholes in an intensified pothole repair effort in March 2010, following the snowiest February in Columbus’ history and a very cold and snowy 2009-10 winter season.
In comparison, Columbus pothole crews fixed 12,400 potholes in March 2009.
Total potholes patched:
Total cost for asphalt (hot mix and cold mix) purchased to patch pothole…
Tons of hot patch used…
Tons of cold patch used…
Columbus Pothole Patchers have other job responsibilities including, but not limited to: snow removal, street cleaning, alley surfacing treatment, mowing, underpass cleaning, and graffiti removal.