Weather taking its toll on area roadways

February 27, 2019

BULLHEAD CITY — Now that the sound drivers hear as they roll through potholes has returned to the familiar clunk-clunk and not clunk-splash, attention is on the aftereffects of the heavy precipitation that moved through Arizona late last week.

Whether it was great deals of snow in Flagstaff and Kingman or a significant amount of rain in Bullhead City, serious winter weather prevailed. State and Mohave County public works officials have their fingers crossed that damage to roads won’t be extensive because of what weather experts dubbed a “once in a decade storm.”

It was more substantial than that in some locations. Flagstaff broke a single-day snowfall record established in 1915 with 31.6 inches at the airport last Thursday.

A good round of rain or snow is healthful for the thirsty desert area but it can be hard on roads in general, said Michele Beggs, community relations project manager for the Arizona Department of Transportation.

“We need the moisture. It was wonderful,” Beggs said. But last week’s weather event “was punishing on our roads.”

She said the weather affected U.S. Highways 93, 95, 66 and Interstate 40 and required closure for awhile of I-40 and U.S. 93.

ADOT continues to work on several areas of road. People can call the state agency’s Kingman office at 928-681-6010 to report road problems. Leave a message if no one can take the call.

Beggs also asked drivers to watch out for workers tending to the roads.

There are some problems on Highway 95 in Bullhead City and the Fort Mohave/Mohave Valley area. One of the worst stretches of the highway in Bullhead City is in front of and near Mohave Community College. College Way, which leads in and out of the campus, is potholed and extremely rough near its intersection with Highway 95 as well.

Mohave County roads seem to be fairing relatively well overall, said Les Henley, the county’s engineering manager. He is based in Kingman, which received heavy snow last week as well. There were reports that some locations there witnessed 18 inches or more during the storm.

On Tuesday, snow piles continued to melt in the locations where snowfall was especially heavy.

Cracks can cause the water to seep downward and compromise roads. Adequate drainage on roads is a must because once the underlying structure softens “there are no good outcomes,” Henley explained.

Problems on county roads can be reported by calling 928-757-0910. Leave a message if no one can come to the telephone during the day or the message is being left after business hours.

Bullhead Parkway in Bullhead City is undergoing roadwork in various areas to patch potholes and apply slurry. The wear to the parkway is attributed to cold and rainy weather over the longer-term.

The city announced Tuesday that Highway 95 will be the focus of roadwork today.

City streets with problems should be reported to 928-763-5665. Leave a message when prompted if no one is available to take the call.