Severe weather worsens roads, crews working to make repairs

Posted at 6:59 PM, Oct 22, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-22 20:06:08-04

Imagine watching a chunk of the road from I-35 fly through your windshield, that's exactly what happened to Don Parker while he was driving to work last week.

"All of a sudden, I see this object airborne. No clue what it was," Parker said. "As it got closer I thought, 'Hey that's fixing to hit my truck.'"

Thankfully, Parker made it out with just a few scratches. He was more startled than anything to watch an 18-wheeler fling the 15-inch piece of concrete into his passenger seat, where his wife normally sits.

"It would've been bad," Parker said. "I can't see any way that she wouldn't have been seriously injured."

A week of rain has caused the roads to deteriorate more quickly. Water seeps through cracks in the road, causing them to fall apart.

"With the rain, I think there are more soft spots in the road," Parker said. 

Plenty of new potholes have also popped up across the city.

"We're averaging 15 to 20 potholes per day," said Herb Blomquist, assistant director of operations for the Waco Public Works Department. "With the rain, we've probably responded to 25 to 30 a day."

Blomquist said his team is made up of 22 people who are working on the roads each day. Since the beginning of October, they've already fixed around 220 potholes.

"This crew is like our heroes for potholes," Blomquist said.

Blomquist said the city tries to fill potholes in just 48 hours to make everyone's drive a little bit safer.

TxDOT also tries to fix potholes and other issues as quickly as possible. Both departments are asking the community to let them know where help is needed so accidents like Parker's can be prevented.

"It's one of those things that happened and it's like I said and luckily I'm here to tell about it," Parker said. "Hopefully, it will not happen to someone else."

Potholes are fixed in order of importance based on size, location and severity. Some potholes can take as little as 20 minutes to fix, whereas others can be more complicated. 

To report a pothole in your area, click here

You can also reach out to TXDOT here.

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