If you have traveled on Seneca Rd. in Woodville lately, especially after a rain, you already know it is in bad condition, even though work on resurfacing the road was completed only six weeks ago. Tyler County Commissioners heard a report last week from engineers who have been determining what went wrong, and how much of the road needs to be replaced or repaired.
Tyler County Commissioner Martin Nash said that the $1.3 million project to resurface the road started about three months ago, but there were quality issues throughout the process that became apparent only after the rain started, when it became obvious that the product used for the road had never hardened.
Nash explained that lab tests on the material determined the problem was "dirty sand," which is sand with too much clay in it and too large an aggregate. The result is that the material, which is supposed to harden, never did, and when the rain started it began washing away. Goodwin-Lasiter, the engineers who examined the road, have determined that as much as 80 percent of the job needs to be replaced and said there were a number of problems with the road material.
Tyler County Judge Jacques Blanchette asked the engineer what would happen if, after repairs to the percentage of the road they had identified needed repair, the road that remained began to break down. "If we get to summer and the heat starts baking the road and it starts breaking down, what recourse do the citizens of the county have?" Blanchette asked. The engineer explained that there is a 12-month warranty after the county accepts the work.
As a result of the continuing deterioration of the road, the county has not accepted the project as completed and, Nash said, is asking Pinto Construction, the general contractor, to provide the road the contract called for. He also suggested that it would be a good idea to request an extended warranty on the areas that will stay in place.
The Seneca Road project was funded by a General Land Office Ike Round 2 grant with no expense to the county. The GLO was the entity who actually contracted with Pinto Construction for the project.
Commissioners will meet Friday at 10:30 a.m. to consider, and to accept or reject, written recommendations from Goodwin-Lasiter concerning the fix for Seneca Road.