New York community combats potholes with patcher
Last year, Staten Island’s Transportation Task Force had asked the local department of transportation (DOT) for “out-of-the-box” solutions to improve local roads. Following a demonstration in July 2014, Staten Island, N.Y., began using the all-in-one Bergkamp FP5 Flameless Pothole Patcher early in 2015. The unit, from Salina, Kan.-based Bergkamp Inc., was one of three solutions that the DOT had advocated. The equipment provides efficient pothole patching, and can also handle small road resurfacing projects.
The FP5 reduces material waste with an insulated 5.1-cubic-yard electric-heated hopper that keeps asphalt at a constant temperature and pliable for an extended period. The unit comes standard with the InPave Technology Pothole Patching Management System to monitor and manage pothole-patching performance.
The technology provides multiple data reporting sensors that are placed throughout the unit. As potholes are repaired, the system automatically gathers data and transmits it back to the office. The web-based setup allows data retrieval from any computer with Internet access.
The manufacturer says pothole patches repaired using the FP5 have an increased life over the traditional “throw and roll” method. The damaged area is removed and squared off using the pavement breaker. The air and tack wand blows out any remaining debris and applies the tack coating, which helps bind the new asphalt to the existing pavement. The material chute delivers the hot asphalt to the prepared area, and the compactor then consolidates the material evenly with the existing pavement.
“Given the budget realities that we faced, it was imperative that DOT adopt new tactics and technology to do more with what we had,” said city council member Steven Matteo. “This is neither the beginning nor the end to our efforts to improve our roads, but it is a huge step in the right direction,” he added. Matteo also serves on the city’s Transportation Task Force.