ODOT replacing pavement on I-71 due to pothole problems on south side

The pavement on Interstate 71 in the Grove City area was in need of repairs, so ODOT crews took advantage of nice weather over the weekend to do some major work. (WSYX/WTTE)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WSYX/WTTE) -- The pavement on Interstate 71 in the Grove City area was in need of repairs, so ODOT crews took advantage of nice weather over the weekend to do some major work.

"We need to take action now to get these repairs done. You can only pothole patch for so long," said ODOT Transportation Engineer Andrew Opsitnik.

He said the work is much more intensive than patching. Crews put almost a foot of asphalt onto the roadway, but potholes are part of the problem.

"We have actually been potholing this section of the road for the last two weeks, but it keeps failing on us," he said.

It fits into ODOT's major work plans on the south side.

"The $113 million southside mega fix project, the road needs it. Anybody that has driven the stretch here lately in the past few years knows it is a rough stretch of road," said Opsitnik.

He said some traffic needed to be diverted while work is done on the mega fix project, so the pavement crews worked on Friday needs to last through out the year.

While crews were busy repairing pavement, down the road, workers at Bill's on Broadway in Grove City were busy too. Inside the auto repair shop, they showed ABC6/FOX28 a lineup of all the damage they've seen recently from potholes. Their advice to stay safe: preventative maintenance.

"With your body, if something doesn't feel right, you go to the doctor. If something doesn't feel right with your car, you come to us," said auto technician Dustin Eblin.

The team was happy to see ODOT doing the work, because they said they have witnessed just how devastating potholes can be for drivers.

"It is extremely dangerous. It can kill you, or other people. I have seen it happen, you know, something falls off the front end of a car, it veers off, you can't control it," he said.

ODOT crews will work on the northbound lanes on Sunday. The goal was to have a smoother roadway by Monday.

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