Changing temps create headaches for drivers in Rockland

By Stephen Betts | Feb 04, 2019
Photo by: Beth A. Birmingham

Rockland — The wild swings in temperature and heavy rains this winter are making for bumpy rides for motorists in Rockland.

Public Services Director David St. Laurent acknowledged that potholes are more severe this year.

"We have had more freeze-and-thaw cycles with rain. Freeze-and-thaw cycles are the main cause of more potholes being created, along with roads in serious need of resurfacing," St. Laurent said.

"This is a difficult situation, since the condition of the roads are in such poor shape. We are asking motorists to be patient. By next fall, many of the roads in Rockland will be repaved," he said.

The community organization Heart & Soul -- which has interviewed more than 300 people and received comments from 1,000 more -- points out that the number-one priority listed by people, by far, was the need to fix potholes.

The public services director said to deal with this problem, the city is using two crews to repair potholes in between snowstorms.

He said the city was using the best type of cold patch available. Filling potholes during off hours will be done following rainstorms.

The city has also instituted a tracking form broken down by zones that is filled out each time a crew goes out to patch a pothole.

He said the city plans to pave the roads this upcoming summer that, for the most part, have the highest number of problems.

The Maine Department of Transportation typically spends $4.5 million annually to fill potholes across the state, according to spokesman Ted Talbot. This year, through Jan. 25, the state has spent $2 million, which is about average for this time of the year, Talbot said.

"But it is important to recognize that any warmer period in the winter -- especially those that also include heavy rains -- will increase the frequency of potholes. Once we move into the spring thaw, we will see the usual increase there as well," Talbot said.

Comments (4)
Posted by: Richard McKusic, Sr. | Mar 18, 2019 08:35

They continue to uselessly fill the potholes and it is bouncing back out as quickly as it is put in. Just drove Pleasant Street and the holes were empty within 15 minutes! Terrible waste of money unless it is going to be done correctly. Yes, for the first time I complained to City Hall.

Posted by: Richard McKusic, Sr. | Feb 23, 2019 08:58

Certainly hope that Rockland gets their roads fixed before this Summer's bike race. That is what happens when bond money voted on by the people is not spent ASAP. Prices go up and the need increases exponentially. Traffic has slowed down on some streets to 5-10 MPH in order to prevent damage to the vehicle; just observed that on lower Thomaston Street.

Posted by: Steven D Bryant | Feb 04, 2019 17:00

We live on Chickawaukie Pond Rd. The homeowners assoc. filled a pothole 2 seasons ago with a "concrete" based filler. I didn't think it would withstand 1 season let alone 2 and its still holding. If we "Joe Taxpayer" have to wait arduous months and break multiple car parts, why not spend a little extra of OUR money and put down a product worth while. Just Sayin!!!

Posted by: Richard McKusic, Sr. | Feb 04, 2019 06:21

How come they do not tamp the cold pack instead on just shoveling it in and it gets bounced out before the day is over? shows how it is done properly.


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