Potholes destined to keep construction crews busy

Heather Brimicombe
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You may have heard the saying that there are two seasons: winter and construction. Well, in Pictou County the seasons seem to be winter and potholes.

A pothole has formed at the intersection of Bridge Avenue and Foord Street in Stellarton. HEATHER BRIMICOMBE – THE NEWS

Potholes are filled with snow in the winter, and we kind of forget they are there, but along comes the spring thaw and it looks like the roads have been a battleground, riddled with holes.

“Weather conditions are the enemy,” said Troy Webb, area manager for the Department of Transportation. During the spring Webb and others trying to take care of the potholes only have access to a cold patch material to fill the potholes.

“Sometimes it sticks and lasts, sometimes it doesn’t,” said Webb about the finicky patching material. “it depends on the conditions you are doing the work in.” Webb notes that there are always a few problem patches, such as the entrance to the Westville Irving.

“We’ve been filling it very frequently,” said Webb, admitting that it has been patched at least a half a dozen times by now. Other problem areas that may be fixed in the county include a rough section on the eastbound lane of highway 104, between exits 21 and 25. There are also plans to continue paving the Alma road.

“We have a few other candidates proposed but nothing confirmed yet,” said Webb. For any input as to which roads you think should be paved, Webb invites residents to call the office.

“This season is worse than others,” said Earl Mackenzie, town engineer for New Glasgow. The Town of New Glasgow follows a rating system to decide which roads will be paved next. The rating part of the system has already happened, and needs to be sorted through and run by council before the paving can begin.


The service adviser for the Canadian Tire auto repair shop, Greg Kenny, sees cars bumped around by potholes come in to the shop every day.

“Obviously with the road conditions, they are creating problems,” said Kenny. Some of the problems that can be caused by potholes are broken springs, struts; wheel bearings and bent rims.

“We’ve been seeing a lot more broken springs this year than usual,” said Kenny. Most problems caused by potholes have to do with suspension, he added. He does have one tip for drivers when dealing with potholes though, “it’s better to slow down before you hit the pothole, and release the brake when you hit the pothole.”

Organizations: Department of Transportation, Canadian Tire

Geographic location: New Glasgow

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Recent comments

  • Tit for Tat
    May 02, 2014 - 13:54

    The roads and streets here in Pictou County are TERRIBLE....a lot of them are in serious condition, filling pot holes is just a patch job indeed, a lot of these roads need to be resurfaced. By the time you pay some Company to do the patching and filling, that is only temporary, put new roads in and save money, they are surely going to last a lot longer then a filling. We deserve better roads then we have right now, seeing that the tax rate is over rated, start putting some of that tax money where we the People can see how wisely our money is being used.

  • johnny smoke
    April 30, 2014 - 08:37

    Ever notice how it is the same old pot holes in the same old places? Ever watch a patching crew throw asphalt into a hole half full of water and debris then tamp it a couple of times and move on to the next? Ever wonder should they not be preparing the pot hole for the patching mixture? Ever hear the term job security ? I mean why fix it right when it can be patched and repatched year after year. Oh by the way the governments thank you for the HST that you pay on car repairs. I mean why ruin a good thing with proper maintenance?