I’m sure you’ve been puzzled by some of the road work the past two weeks (basecourse being scooped off the road surface into the ditch, then placed back on the road, lots of dust, and an odd delamination of parts of the road surface caused by the road grader), and you probably also were alarmed by the slippery conditions this morning on part of the road near the RR tracks, following yesterday’s slight snow.
My fellow SRRA director, Al Webster, and I had a lengthy conversation today with RoadPacker distributor Bob Sherwin to clarify what’s been happening and what the course of action will be. According to Mr. Sherwin, the problem is that the temporary basecourse was removed too soon, before the road had a chance to dry out and cure adequately. The road base itself is extremely hard and durable; however, rain or snow creates a thin (1/4”-1/2”) veneer of slimy mush on the uncured surface, and it is this which has caused the slipperiness we have all experienced.
Furthermore, during the past weeks, the pressure of road traffic against the extremely hard RoadPacker base has caused some of the basecourse gravel to pulverize. With the addition of moisture, this pulverized basecourse tuned into a cement-like goop on the road surface that was broken up by the grader, creating the unusual delaminations.
During the next two days, the contractor will smooth out the entire road (again!) and spread basecourse back onto the road surface (from Rte 285 to the RR tracks), in order to prevent unsafe slippery conditions during the next couple of months. This will be a very thin coating, in order to minimize the slight washboarding that occurred with the thicker basecourse. By late April or May, the water resistance of the road surface will be reevaluated, in order to determine if the basecourse can be removed for good. I’ll keep you posted if there are new developments.
Finally, let me remind you that the second annual SRRA community meeting will be held at 2 pm on Saturday, March 31 at my house (