Momentum Magazine April 2019 Edition | Page 8

Craters, Concrete and Construction An update on area roads, courtesy of PennDOT This year, April will be the start of an extremely busy construction season for PennDOT. With 2018 being the wettest year on record for many counties in our region, numerous areas have seen washouts and slides. As the weather finally gets warmer, crews will begin to repair the damage that was caused by all that water. Water is also the cause of the most notorious and annoying of road conditions – potholes! A pothole is created when water seeps into the roadway, and then begins to expand and contract with temperature fluctuations. This past winter was filled with numerous days that were fluctuating between temperatures 8 • The Greater Scranton Chamber of Commerce above 32 degrees and below 32 degrees. Combine that with one of the wettest years on record, and we’ve got the perfect recipe for creating a pothole. Motorists will not only see PennDOT crews hard at work this year, they will also see a lot of work done by private contractors who work for PennDOT. Most of the time, many of the larger, long-term projects are completed by private contractors. The most noticeable of these in 2019 will be along Interstate 81. This year, three different construction projects will begin, starting in Dunmore and going to Nuangola. The good news is that PennDOT is requiring the contractor to maintain two lanes of traffic during the day. With few exceptions, work that requires a lane closure will occur at night. Projects will not only take place on major highways, like Interstate 81, but will also happen on many lesser-traveled roads in rural areas. You may see crews doing “oil and chip” on rural roads that don’t appear to be in poor condition. Oil and chip works like a driveway sealant – it helps preserve and protect a road that is in good condition, giving it longer life moving forward. With all the work taking place on our roads this year, it is critically important to remember to use extreme caution when driving. Put down the phone and focus on the task at hand so that we can all make it home at the end of the day. This year will be one of the busiest years ever on our roads here in NEPA. Let’s also work together to make it the safest.