A struggle against the elements for the Ministry of Highways
A string of nice days are what highway crews are hoping for in Saskatchewan.
Doug Wakabayashi, spokesperson for the Ministry of Highways said that while rain does cause problems and slows work, the magnitude depends on the type of work being done.
“Any construction work that involves grading is really slowed and could really come to a complete halt until the ground and the material the crews are working with has a chance to dry out,” said Wakabayashi.
He said the weather's impact on paving or repaving work is not too significant but responding to spring road damage like the potholes and surface breaks can be slowed and even halted by soggy conditions.
“We do need the road beds to dry out before we can make any lasting repairs. So any place where there’s been lots of rain right now our crews are really limited to making temporary types of repairs until there’s some significant drying,” said Wakabayashi.
Areas of the province that saw significant flooding last year are even harder to work on.
“The far east central part of the Province and the southeastern part of the province, a lot of those roads were still saturated at freeze up so with the rain this spring there really hasn’t been any chance for those roads to dry out and they really are quite soft,” said Wakabayashi.
It is still relatively early in the construction season so a run of nice weather could make time to catch up Wakabayashi noted.
If Saskatchewan sees a warm and dry fall it is possible for the construction season to extend late into October or early November said Wakabayashi.
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