Pothole Killers

ATLANTIC CITY -- The bulk of machinery trudging along Sovereign Avenue Friday afternoon belonged to Peter Carpinona.

The 48-year old, assisted by David Logan, 52, a Public Works liaison of the city, cleaned up one of Atlantic City and the state's biggest problems: potholes.

Dubbed as the "Pothole Killers," the city has enlisted Carpinona's machinery as a more efficient method of repairing potholes. His truck only needs a lone operator who fill craters left from last winter.

Since Monday and have moved over 52 tons, Logan said, of stone and asphalt. Carpinona called it an inconvenience not only to the city, but also it's constituents.

"It's a tourist town and when you have people from the outside coming in, you don't want them coming in to see holes in the street," he said.

The Pothole Killers, an invention of Pennsylvania-based Patch Management, Inc., employ an innovative system that is quicker, safer and more environmentally friendly than traditional crew-based efforts.

From the safety of the truck, a single vehicle operator controls a hydraulic boom, which clears the pothole of debris, applies liquid asphalt to fill and seal it, and then tops it off with a dry aggregate coating.

The process takes roughly 90 seconds per pothole – essentially the same as the wait at a typical traffic signal. The repairs, on the other hand, last for several years and the repaired roadway is immediately ready to take on traffic.

Logan said that the purpose also stemmed from saving the front-end of many citizen's vehicles. The potholes aren't just aberrations, they're also dangerous a motorist. 

"Some of the potholes inside Atlantic City are four-feet wide and five feet long, then some are only eight inches deep," he said. "It may not seem like a lot, but it is when your car is hitting it."

The state recently invested $4 million in fixing potholes. If a motorist hits one, it could cost them thousands of dollars in damage. Other risks can range from blown tires to cracked rims to wheel and suspension costs.

Citizens can file claims against the state if their car is damaged by a pothole. Last year, there were over 2,000 claims filed to the state, but only 12 were paid out.

"I can't stand potholes," Carpinona said. "The company is taking care of the city, and it's been working really well."

The Pothole Killers have been from Cleveland to Rhode Island to Philadelphia fixing potholes, Carpinona said.

Contact 609-272-7260

On Twitter: @TylerRickyTynes

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