Alamo Township residents push to get potholes fixed: ‘It’s getting worse’

Posted at 8:00 PM, Apr 11, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-11 20:00:51-04

ALAMO TOWNSHIP, Mich. — As winter turns into spring, local roadways transform into a landscape of potholes. Residents in Alamo Township know this all too well. A few of their cars have been damaged by the potholes on AB Avenue near 1st Street and they’re getting tired of it.

“I'm very concerned for a motorcyclist or an inexperienced driver, if they lose control, not being familiar with the road,” said resident Sarah Clemens. “There are some large potholes and there’s more, numerous potholes. It's not just one. And it’s just, it’s getting worse.”

Clemens emailed Fox 17 a video of AB Avenue that shows how bad the road really is. She said there are at least 30 potholes on one stretch and more elsewhere. Some are a foot-deep and almost the size of a beach ball. She's lived in the area for over 12 years and has seen her fair share of accidents.

“I’ve witnessed a bicyclist tumble head over heels and he was very bloodied,” said Clemens. “They had to call and have someone help him. Teenagers have gotten into accidents.”

Clemens own daughter slid off into a ditch, she said, because the road was such a mess. She and her neighbors said they’ve witnessed various accidents and have had to call 911 several times throughout the years.

“This road been bad for 100 years seem like,” said Chester Babrick, a resident for over three decades. “It tears your car up. You see me going from one lane to another about five miles an hour.”

Clemens said each time an accident happens she calls Kalamazoo County, sometimes multiple times a year.

“We’ve been told several times, that we were scheduled or slated for a new road in 2016,” said Clemens. “This month I called after blowing a tire and I was told I was misinformed, that no we are not going to get a new road in 2016.”

When Fox 17 reached out to the Kalamazoo County Road Commission, Joanna Johnson said that every request is in their system and they take them seriously. They don’t want the potholes to exist either. She said that due to this winter’s fluctuating weather, the commission has received 381 service requests for potholes this year as compared to 206 in 2015. She emphasized that road crews are out there fixing potholes and will repair more potholes as the weather gets warmer.

Clemens and her neighbors said they want something done now before temperatures rise. And they will continue to report the potholes until the road is repaired.

“We’re paying out tax dollars every year,” said Clemens. “Every year they get their spring and their summer taxes. They get their winter taxes religiously from every tax payer. Why aren’t the roads getting the repair they need?”