Pothole hot line gets calls even on roads in Pa.

February 06, 1994|By Phyllis Brill | Phyllis Brill,Sun Staff Writer

By week's end Harford County officials were dizzy with delight over the success of their newly implemented pothole hot line.

"We knew we'd get some phone calls, but we had no idea we'd get this kind of response," said public information officer Sue Collins, who noted that motorists were even reporting craters in Baltimore and on Interstate 95 in Pennsylvania.

The idea of reporting a pothole is so popular that in the less than two weeks the hot line has been operating, more than 140 potholes have been reported on county roads.

"We're even getting calls from kids who take the school bus home and call us about one along their route," said one hot-line operator.

Officials in the Highways Division of the Department of Public Works said they appreciate drivers' vigilance, but would like to remind those that call in reports on non-Harford roads that county repair crews have their cold-patch buckets full just getting to roads in their jurisdiction.

They asked that any potholes encountered on state roads be reported to the State Highway Administration at 838-7788.

The county's three municipalities also patch their own potholes. Drivers can call Bel Air at 638-4545, Havre de Grace at 939-1800 and Aberdeen at 272-2222.

Potholes result when moisture invades a road's foundation, freezes and eventually causes what highway officials call "asphalt disintegration."

Officials boasted that crews have been dispatched to some potholes within minutes of the first reports.

However, they did admit that one offensive hole on Pleasantville Road in Fallston presented an unusual challenge. Residents there say that pothole caught about 30 hubcaps before crews arrived.

And the now-famous crater on Bel Air South Parkway near the Festival, where County Executive Eileen M. Rehrmann encountered winter's revenge, is credited with inspiring more calls than any other pothole.

Officials say the pothole hot line will continue until all county road surfaces are smooth again.

The hot line operates from 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays at 638-3376.

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