PORT RICHMOND — A new truck is helping make the city's roads more drivable.
The Department of Transportation, along with Staten Island's Borough President James Oddo and Councilman Steven Matteo, viewed a demonstration Wednesday of a new paving truck that can fix multiple potholes at one time.
The truck will cut the time it takes to repair roads from the current day-and-a-half to about two hours, according to Galileo Orlando, deputy commissioner for Roadway Repair and Maintenance at the DOT.
"This allows us to cut out all the defects and do a nice patch," Orlando said. "It's about moving the process forward, incrementally, step-by-step, so we can actually do more."
Currently, when the DOT needs a large amount of asphalt for repairs, a truck that keeps the material heated at 300 degrees by fire is needed. Workers have to shovel the asphalt from the truck bed.
The new trucks electronically heat the asphalt and pour it out for workers.
"It combines everything we need in basically one truck," Orlando said. "Enough material, the prep products, some of the equipment we need, and it does it in an electronically heated, more friendly, environment."
Oddo, who has held two meeting with the DOT and Matteo that mainly focused on the conditions of Staten Island roads, said the trucks would be an important first step towards improving streets by doing more "wear and tear" fixes.
"This particular component addresses, in our minds, the common scenario on roads in Staten Island — multiple potholes," Oddo said.
"You drive on Staten Island, you will come upon a stretch of road that has 10, 20, 30, 40 potholes that were repaired at one point."
Instead of just filling a series of pothole, crews will mill out the section of road then come with the new truck the next day to fill it.
"This prevents DOT from having to come back here a week later to repair pothole after pothole," Matteo said. "It's a good first step, I'm a firm believer in wear and tears."
The DOT was unable to say how much the trucks cost, but said they plan to have one in every borough — and potentially two in Staten Island — by the end of next winter.