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City preparing pothole patchers

Pothole season is in full swing in our area and it's something that none of us can ignore.Now, the city has laid out a plan to help tackle the huge problem.

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Pothole season is in full swing in our area and it's something that none of us can ignore. It seems to be an issue every day.

Now, the city has laid out a plan to help tackle the huge problem.

The city has two DuraPatcher machines that are currently being cleaned and prepped for service. They should be ready to go starting next week, or possibly sooner if the weather holds out.

DuraPatch is the same method of fixing potholes as the "Pothole Killer" that was used in years past.

Both machines will be out on streets that are pothole riddled to smooth out the pavement. They will also be relied on for concrete streets that need major joint repairs.

The liquid asphalt used with these machines just became available for the year, and the city is happy to use every tool they have to increase progress and ease the troubles of many residents.

Miguel "Tito" Velez, Corporate business Leader for Marco's Pizza discussed his experience with the pothole problem.

"Personally, I've had a little bit of trouble in my company vehicle and my personal vehicle in the area. The biggest thing that we're hearing right now is our drivers, they're constantly on the road and dodging potholes on some of these roads." Velez said. "Right around this area on South Avenue it seems to be getting worse. I remember when I moved to Toledo, South Avenue was very bad, and they did repair most of it, but there are some areas that need attention now."

"It has affected business," Velez added, "people are tending to order more delivery so they don't have to bring their personal vehicles out and, obviously that affects us because we spend more time on the roads."

The city is targeting streets that are high-traffic and have decent pavement, but also the bad areas that keep becoming an issue. These holes will be cleaned of all debris with an air compressor, coated with liquid asphalt, and patched with a mix of hot liquid and recycled asphalt.

"This should be a lot more permanent because of the liquid being added to the stone and it packing it in as you're applying the material. We should also be able to use it in a lot more different areas such as concrete streets that are having joint failures. We should be able to use it there to blend in the joints a little bit better, making it smoother," said Jeremy Mikolajczyk, Commissioner of Streets, Bridges and Harbor for the City of Toledo.

Once the potholes are fixed with the DuraPatcher, they can be driven on immediately, and fully set after about 10 minutes.

The roads have to be above freezing and relatively dry for the DuraPatcher to be effective, so weather is a factor for completion of these projects. The city has the ability to run the DuraPatcher machines for months, even after they start permanently fixing a lot of the more serious potholes with hot asphalt once asphalt plants reopen in about a month.

In the meantime, crews will also still be out patching as they have been for the past few weeks.

The city has responded with a statement:

City crews are working 10-hour shifts Monday through Friday and 8 hours on Saturdays to catch up on potholes. There will be 8 to 14 crews working, depending on staffing levels and other projects.

Many potholes are the result of decisions made by others outside of the city to remove funding that once kept us up with our streets program. We are seeing the results of those decisions and we are working hard to resolve them. Other communities are battling the same issue. Your city employees have been working long hours on this. Please slow down when you see them out there.'

More information on the DuraPatch machines can be found here.