Road crews have a system for pothole patching

Patching potholes

BOARDMAN, Ohio (WYTV) – As road crews around the Valley look for ways to more effectively keep up with all the potholes, they said they are trying to address complaints as quickly as they can.

Youngstown, Boardman, Austintown and the Mahoning County Engineer each have four or five crews working the roads under their jurisdictions just to keep up with the conditions.

“They follow their plow routes, two-man trucks, five trucks a day. We have been doing that since Thursday of last week,” Austintown Trustee Jim Davis said.

He said crews try to prioritize which roads need repairs before others, but they said complaints are added into the mix as well.

“We try to follow up on any complaint immediately. If somebody does call in to one of the local elected officials at the township, or they call our road supervisor, we take those as priorities,” Davis said.

Of the five crews working Mahoning County roads, one is tasked specifically to deal with complaints.

“If you call and say such-and-such road has a huge pothole in front of this address, that crew is going to try and address that, where the other crews are going to station on a road or several roads,” Mahoning County Engineer Pat Ginnetti said.

Davis and Ginnetti both said they are reluctant to promise repairs will be finished in a certain amount of time without knowing how long specific jobs will take.

A perfect example is Western Reserve Road, which runs from one end of the county to the other. A crew has been working there the past two days until they run out of material and have to drive to Canton and back with a new load at $125 a ton.

Ginnetti said besides specific complaint areas, his crews are assigned, as are those in Youngstown, to the higher volume main roads and to stay with those until they are finished before moving on to another one.

“They don’t always like the answer we give them, but like I tell people, we can’t be everywhere at once. I can’t just have my crews hodgepodge and jumping around. We have to have somewhat of a method to our madness,” Ginnetti said.

Officials ask drivers be patient while crews work to get to all the problems.

And if your car or truck sustains damage because of hitting a pothole, you may find some relief through your insurance. Many insurance policies include pothole-related damage under the owner’s collision coverage.

Usually, insurance will only cover what your individual deductible does not and generally, policies will not provide full replacement value. Those drivers carrying only “liability” insurance will not be covered. Insurance agents suggest checking with your own insurance company to determine what coverage you may have.

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