San Jose City Crews Take Advantage of Break Between Storms to Fill Potholes - NBC Bay Area
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San Jose City Crews Take Advantage of Break Between Storms to Fill Potholes

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    Public works crews are using a brief break from the rain to try and fix problems caused by the recent wet weather, specifically potholes. Damian Trujillo reports. (Published Thursday, Jan. 7, 2016)

    Public works crews are using a brief break from the rain to try and fix problems caused by the recent wet weather, specifically potholes.

    In San Jose, crews spent Thursday filling potholes and dodging cars.

    "It's kind of like Frogger, that old game," said Damon Ovalle, a San Jose city worker. "Trying to stay alive."

    Ovalle's crew spent hours walking on Monterey Highway, which was the only way to get to every pothole.

    The break in the rain also allowed crews to assess the damage caused by the recent series of storms.

    "Potholes are kind of like weeds -- as soon as the rain comes, they pop up," said Richard Look, the city's storm preparedness coordinator for the Department of Transportation.

    Look said his teams started preparing for El Niño storms months ago, making sure they had enough staff and equipment to keep up with the rain damage.

    Filling up potholes is near the top of the priority list for city crews.

    "As soon as the rain comes, the potholes just show up," Look said. "They weren't there the day before."

    Some drivers said swerving is their best defense against the ever-growing pothole problem.

    "And that's not always the safest when you're driving on the street and there's trouble," driver Armando Anaya said.

    Other drivers said it is a welcome sight to see crews filling in potholes to make roads safer.

    "They hit the bottom of your car and really do some damage," driver Shelby Andrada said. "I'm glad they're starting to fill them in because my tires will be happy."

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