, Derry, New Hampshire

March 13, 2014

Resident unhappy with town's road repairs

Lane Road resident unhappy with response from town on her bumpy road

By Julie Huss

---- — DERRY — This winter has wreaked havoc on some local roads, causing potholes, pavement cracks and frost heaves.

One Lane Road resident wants more done to keep motorists safe when traveling down her bumpy road this winter. But local highway officials say they are doing their best, it’s been a tough winter and roads are showing the results.

Linda Nault called the town to report a stretch of her road is sinking, cracking and getting worse by the day.

“It’s a sinkhole developing,” Nault said. “And it’s getting bigger.”

She has lived there 12 years and said she has never seen a problem this bad during the winter.

After she complained, some highway workers came out to patch the hole, but Nault said it wasn’t enough.

Town officials later told her it was a frost heave that would eventually work its way out once the temperature improves.

“But this isn’t a frost heave, it’s a hole,” Nault said.

Town officials say they are doing all they can.

Public Works director Michael Fowler said residents often call with concerns about their roads and potholes. He said Lane Road is one of the town’s older roads and there isn’t much his department can do when the winter is producing such heaves in the pavement.

He said this has been a cold, hard winter and this particular portion of Lane Road is suffering from deep frost heaves and distortions that will improve once the weather improves.

He said Derry is not alone.

“Other towns have struggled with this,” Fowler said.

The plows have been out so much this season they are also adding stress.

Nault is also worried about drainage and how her home could be affected. She has had water issues and flooding in the past.

Fowler said his crews keep an eye on the worst potholes and also make sure catch basins and culverts are kept clear.

“When we see those issues, we are repairing them,” he said. “We’re in a decent condition.”

Fowler said signs would be posted on Lane Road, warning people of the damaged pavement and frost heaves.

Nault still worries that the hole will continue to grow.

“The road is just cracking away,” Nault said. “And this has nothing to do with frost heaves.”