COBB CO., Ga—While our roads may be free of snow and ice right now, the cost of dealing with our winter storms continues even after streets are clear.
Cobb County has spent close to a half-million dollars dealing with snowfall in December and January. Some of the cleanup will last into March.
Among the lingering issues are the potholes that are a direct result of snow and ice. Not only are Cobb County road crews busy dealing with dozens of potholes, they occasionally have to fill them twice. That’s because asphalt plants aren’t churning out enough of the product they need.
“We put down cold mix to temporarily patch them, and that doesn't last long,” says Cobb’s Bill Shelton. “It comes back out once it rains, so we have to go back and redo that.”
Moisture seeps through the cracks in the asphalt. When that moisture freezes, the ground beneath the road expands and causes the asphalt to buckle and eventually collapse. That’s how snow and ice help create a pothole.
Cobb is also working to clear away all of the limbs and branches that gave way to snow and ice and still lines area streets.
The Georgia Department of Transportation will have to deal with all of the reflectors that have were dislodged from area highways by snow plows. Right now, GDOT has no idea how many need to be replaced. While a new reflector costs only 75-cents, by the time you add the cost of labor to put them back in their proper spot, it’s more like $5 apiece.
GDOT’s Natalie Dale says the reflectors aren't required by the federal government, so the agency plans to wait until after winter to determine how many are missing, and how much they need to spend.