The Pothole Problem

By Olivia Neilson

Let’s face it; driving can be one of the most frustrating activities around. Surely at certain parts of the day, and especially at certain parts of the year, when seasons brand themselves with titles such as the Michigan Winter Vortex.
I’m not just referring to annoyances like having to maneuver around city grid locks, driving through blizzards and the less-than-strategic driving of others, but specifically the series of craters one’s vehicle must endure that rivals the surface of the moon.
While some degree of street erosion is inevitable during the winter season, the potholes and ice damage of 2014 are a force to be reckoned with.
These hazardous streets are, at best, unpleasant to look at, and at worst, a great hazard to anyone behind the wheel. Uneven roads and ones speckled with potholes can be a root of great peril, not to mention the hefty bill for car damage.
Seaholm mother Peggy Gronewold experienced a real scare when her daughter’s car flipped over on Maple road this winter because of uneven roads.
“I felt pure panic as I recognized her car and then saw people pulling her out of the vehicle,” Gronewold said. “Once I knew she was safe, I was incredibly grateful that the car protected her and that she (or another driver) was not injured.”
Unfortunately, the mutilation of vehicles has only worsened this year due to the
Staggering rate of construction taking place in and around Birmingham.
Birmingham’s agenda for 2013 covered the resurfacing of many roads throughout the city, sewer replacements and an overwhelming amount of residential building. The city plans to carry over abandoned and otherwise lingering projects to 2014, while striking up several new ones, including the reconstruction of Oxford St. and Kennesaw, the replacement of sewer and water lines on North Eton Street, the resurfacing of neighborhood streets and building of new structures.
Such booming construction speaks of a good economy as well as a hazardous map to navigate, and terrible road conditions surely aren’t helping.
Construction crews in the East Maple Gardens subdivision walked away from a sewer replacement gig back in November, leaving the project to linger and worsen in the inclement weather, being coated with ice and embedded with dangerous potholes.
“I am speculating that there was black ice underneath the patch of snow that my daughter hit,” Gronewold said. “The city needs to do the best job that they can possibly do to quickly clear and salt the roads.”
Poor street conditions aren’t specific to one location, but a universal problem this winter, calling for immediate action by the city to mend the roads before they cause any more accidents.

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