Press-Republican

Ouellette

May 18, 2014

Current roadway repair plan full of holes

I edged the car to the right, skimming the curb, then spun the wheel hard to the left. Corrected slightly to the right, then back to the left, into the wrong lane — which was fine, since the car in that lane had swerved into mine.

I vaulted onto the sidewalk for just a split second, then back into the road, where I hit the brakes hard, putting the vehicle into a controlled slide until it rested snugly against the stop sign. Success!

For nearly 300 feet, I had avoided every pothole.

That was a good day, but those are few and far between, unlike the potholes, which are plentiful, and grouped together in ever-expanding circles of destruction.

Potholes are currently the bane of my existence, and I am infuriated that when I dare go out on the road, I don’t see every available public employee — along with chain gangs of work-release prisoners, concerned neighbors and volunteers from Greenpeace — lining the streets and fixing these craters.

Sure, I know that there are limited resources — both budget and personnel — and I know that to properly patch a pothole in semi-permanent fashion, the weather should be warm and dry, which is an ongoing issue of its own this spring.

I know all that, and I don’t care.

My own street is an obstacle course, with cracks and dips and pits of various sizes strewn about haphazardly. Last week a bicyclist fell into the largest one and was stranded for two days until we could find a grappling hook.

We know we’re not a priority street, so we’ve tried to fix the worst of it temporarily, filling the holes with whatever we can: dirt, rocks, canned goods, old stuffed toys, tree branches, small pets, mayonnaise. Everything we try, though, sinks into the abyss within 24 hours.

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Ouellette