HELENA — Springtime is around the corner, and you may have noticed more potholes showing up on the streets. Due to the constant change in weather, more will pop up.
“Typically, the potholes are popping up in the springtime because we are getting a lot of freeze and thaws. So, we get the thawing, and if there is any perfection on the surface, the water gets in there, and overnight it freezes. Then it pops, and it kind of continues on,” said David Knoepke, Director of Transportation Services for the City of Helena.
The crews fixing potholes use a cold mix of asphalt, heat it, and fill the holes. During the summer, they use hot asphalt.
The City of Helena Transportation Systems crew has been working hard to fill potholes and clean the streets due to the warmer temperatures.
“If we get some warm spells like we have had this year, we will send out the sweepers during the wintertime if the weather is conducive, and we will get that extra winter sand off the streets, so it is not like driving on a gravel street,” said Knopeke.
The crews run street sweepers, sweeping up the winter gravel and sand, and spraying down the road with water.
Once the sand is recovered it is tested by the Department of Environmental Quality, and if all tests are passed, the sand is reused in the wintertime.
“We recover 60 percent or better of the winter sand we put down so, when that comes back, we test it, and we reintegrate it into our winter sand, so we are recycling the sand the best we can,” said Knoepke.
The road cleaning crews can clean up areas in a month to a month and a half, and if you need a sweeping or sanding request or need to fill a pothole, you can download the MyHelena app on google play or the Apple store.