Questions about oiling roads

To the editor:

Anyone who lives in rural Knox Township probably noticed that this year’s gravel road oiling was done backward. Everyone else oils in late spring or early summer when a series of 90-degree days can drive the oil and emulsion into the road to stabilize the base and reduce dust. Not Knox Township. This year, Knox waited for cool fall weather to oil on top of fallen leaves. More leaves then fell on top, There will be no more 90-degree days to drive the oil into the road base. Some oil might find the road base, but most will just sit on the leaves and the loose gravel they put down first, waiting to be plowed into the ditch with the first snow. What a waste of labor and material.

Worse than the timing was the method. All they did was dribble a light, 6-foot wide strip down the middle of the road. They didn’t use enough oil to really penetrate and didn’t go wide enough to cover the road. It looks like a Mohawk haircut. The result is that residents get oil all over the left side of their cars and in their driveways and still get all the dust. It’s the worst of both worlds and all for no benefit because of the time and inadequate amount of oil used.

Residents of township Roads 249 and 605 saw this coming and asked Trustee Donnie Elder that their road not be oiled this fall. Elder seems to be responsive to the requests of residents, but it doesn’t seem to matter what he or the residents want because Trustee Don Miller and Road Supervisor Johnny Sousa just do what they want. Those roads were done completely wrong and they were also oiled over the objections of residents.

As a note, township Road 243 is the road supervisor’s road, and the gravel portion to it (Wild Cat Hollow) received no oil this fall. Surprise, surprise. My friends and neighbors just want our roads treated the same as his.

Chuck Wilson