The City of Saskatoon is diverting workers to cold-patching potholes in light of warmer weather.
With temperatures expected to hit the double digits over the weekend, acting director of public works Trent Schmidt said crews had wrapped up snow removal operations.
He said that as of Wednesday night, up to eight one-ton trucks per shift were being put out to use cold mix to fill potholes.
A city release said 60 tonnes of cold mix have been used throughout the winter so far — the equivalent of patching just under 3,500 potholes. For 2016, they’re ordering about 25 per cent more cold mix than last year.
Schmidt said this was due to the impact of a milder winter. He said while warmer temperatures have been a blessing for the water and sewer system due to fewer main breaks, they present challenges for the roads.
He said frequent freeze-thaw cycles and more moisture tend to mean more potholes.
Schmidt said people can call the city’s customer service centre 24-hours-a-day at 306–975-2476 to report potholes.
He said repairs are typically prioritized based on pothole depth and the traffic volumes on the road where the hole is located.
The city’s initiative does not replace the annual spring pothole blitz, which is set to begin in April. That will coincide with the reopening of the city’s online pothole reporting utility, which is currently down for maintenance and upgrades to the user interface.
Schmidt said hot asphalt typically becomes available in May, as it isn’t effective until temperatures remain consistently above 0 C overnight.