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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Southwestern Pennsylvania went into the deep freeze around Christmas and emerged a couple of weeks ago. When the mercury started rising, so did the streets. What was frozen beneath the asphalt melted and tires started popping out potholes everywhere.
Over the weekend and throughout the beginning of the week, road crews have spent a lot of their time throwing cold patch in the tire eating craters.
They’ve been hitting those causing safety concerns on major roads, and now it’s time to blanket the area.
The City of Pittsburgh calls it a “Pothole Blitz” that will begin Thursday morning and run through Saturday.
With 300 pothole reports already recorded, the Pittsburgh 311 complaint line officially started soliciting pothole reports today. Public Works Director Mike Gable hopes to fill all that are reported by Saturday night and is bringing in more than 100 people to carry out the attack.
Pittsburgh Chief Operations Officer Guy Costa tells the “KDKA Morning News” workers will be putting in longer hours to get the holes patched.
“We’ll offer overtime this Saturday, weather permitting, to get as many crews out, but we’re also extending our shifts. Our typical shift is 6 a.m. to 2 p.m., but [Thursday] and [Friday] crews will be working 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.,” said Costa.
To keep all those extra crews fueled for the blitz, Primanti Bros. has announced specials for Pittsburgh Public Works workers.
They be offering up their “Almost Famous Sandwiches” for Department of Public Works employees during the blitz. Also, workers who show proof of employment will be given 50 percent off all sandwiches at the restaurant locations in Market Square, the Strip District, South Side, Oakland and Garfield during the blitz.
Primanti Bros. spokesperson Mike Mitcham said in a press release: “We’ve always been here to support the hardworking people of the city. And seriously – there’s almost nothing more difficult than tackling the potholes that have shown up in the last few weeks.”
Meanwhile, in Allegheny County, the full blown attack is already underway with crews in several areas using hot boxes that keep the cold patch pliable and more effective in filling the craters.
Meghan Schiller’s Report:
PennDOT as well as virtually every municipality are going through the same pothole battle. Across the board, the crews have a common request. If you call in a pothole, be as specific on the location as possible.
So where do you call:
- City of Pittsburgh: 311 Hotline
- Allegheny County: 412-350-INFO
- PennDOT: 1-800-FIX-ROAD, or go to Penndot.gov
- Or call your local municipal public works department.
The good news is if you call the wrong place, the report will be forwarded to the proper road crew, or you’ll receive a call back telling you where to call.
Once you report a pothole, give the crews several days to get it filled before you call back to report it again.