MTO begins pothole repair program

By Monte Sonnenberg, Simcoe Reformer

Potholes. Postmedia file photo

Potholes. Postmedia file photo


Motorists having business involving Highway 6 may want to find an alternative route for the next few days.

Pothole problems on the busy road have become so bad that nearby residents have complained about trucks sending shock waves through their homes.

Some have complained that their walls are cracking and there are fears the situation is taking a toll on foundations.

“This is probably the busiest road in Haldimand and handles the majority of traffic from the industrial park in Nanticoke as well as other manufacturing,” Hagersville Coun. Tony Dalimonte said Thursday in an email.

“This road also handles a tremendous amount of tourism-related traffic making its way to Haldimand and Norfolk counties.”

Responsibility for the care and upkeep of Highway 6 lies with the Ministry of Transportation.

The matter has been raised at Haldimand council on several occasions. Staff have passed council’s concerns along to the ministry and have stressed the urgency of effecting repairs.

Haldimand council has been told that Highway 6 is slated for resurfacing later this year. This was supposed to happen a couple years ago but was delayed by the requirement for an archaeological survey.

“Residents were told the ministry may hire a contractor to come out and do some grinding out of the worst sections in the interim,” Dalimonte says. “We are still waiting for this to happen.”

There is hope for improvement over the next week or so. The MTO is taking advantage of the mild weather that settled in Wednesday to make spot repairs.

“The swings in temperature resulting in continual freeze-thaw cycles have resulted in significant asphalt potholing throughout a 10-kilometre stretch of Highway 6,” MTO spokesperson Liane Fisher Bloxam said Thursday in an email.

“With the break in the winter weather, we have retained a contractor to patch areas of Highway 6 using hot-mix asphalt. The intent of the hot-mix strategy is to place and compact hot asphalt throughout the areas under a lane closure.

“This method allows for a more robust treatment of pothole repair and to restore the driving surface of the highway until the reconstruction project planned for 2018 is underway.”

Fisher Bloxam added that pothole repairs began in earnest Thursday morning and will continue “for a few days to complete the entire stretch.”

The pending resurfacing project involves Highway 6 between First Line and Argyle Street South in Caledonia. Fisher Bloxam says that will get underway in late April or early May.

Fisher Bloxam says the archaeological survey has identified six areas of interest within the construction zone. A total of 1,669 artifacts have been recovered as well as a house foundation dating back to the 1860s.

Another site dating back to the 1800s suggests European settlement along with an indigenous component.

Haldimand-Norfolk MPP Toby Barrett is also hearing complaints about Highway 6.

“The phone calls and emails continue to come in,” Barrett said in a recent column in The Reformer.

“As taxpayers, area residents feel they deserve far better maintenance than they have been receiving. The same applies for all infrastructure and I will continue to push for improvements. Further, this government must do a better job communicating its plans to those who pay the freight.”

Anyone who believes substandard road conditions have damaged their vehicle or other property is encouraged to document the details (time, date, location, photos, etc.) and the nature of the problem. This can include receipts for repairs or estimates from professionals who can repair the damage.

Compensation claims should be mailed to: Ministry of Government Services, Risk Management Division, 700 University Avenue, Sixth floor, Toronto, Ont., M7A 2S4.

Information on making claims in this area is also available by calling 1-416-314-5530.