MAHONING CO., Ohio (WKBN) – Cold temperatures and severe weather swept through the Valley this past week. However, we’re in store for a warmup this week. How will the change in temperatures affect our roads?
Last weekend’s winter storm brought plenty of snow, ice and high winds. The lowest temperature in the Valley reached -5 degrees. However, things are heating back up.
“Any time you have this, you got this freeze/thaw cycle, it’s going to cause issues, you know, roads break up,” said Mahoning County engineer Pat Ginnetti.
Ginnetti said the fluctuation in temperatures causes road damage to occur more rapidly.
“It would be a lot better if it just stayed cold for the whole winter,” Ginnetti said.
As far as treating the roads go…
“Snow is easier to treat than the extreme cold like we had last week because it went from rain to below zero. So the salt stops working at a certain temperature,” Ginnetti said.
According to Ginnetti, the warmup coming this week is “going to expose the weak spots.”
“Whether it’s extreme dryness or cold, or cold to hot, hot to cold, you know, the ground is moving. So weak points will expose themselves as a result of that,” Ginnetti said.
As far as the water lines go, Ginnetti said the county only owns a small portion of the water system. However, the roads will be closely monitored.
“Some of the roads that haven’t been paved in several years obviously are more prone to break up than the newer ones. But we got roads that were paved this year that will start to show cracks,” Ginnetti said.
If a line were to break this week, the owner of the line is responsible for the costs to fix it.