MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Sometime after The Dominion Post published its March 30 story on Monongalia County’s five delegates taking a pothole tour of Western Mon, the Division of Highways came out and patched a short portion of Jakes Run Road.
The patched portion was one that had caught the particular attention of the delegates, and Delegate Barbara Evans Fleischauer phoned The Dominion Post to share the news of the patching.
A photo with the story showed Delegate Danielle Walker standing in a pothole in this sketchy section between some S-curves, where water is washing away the hillside and half of a lane is gone for a stretch.
That portion underwent extensive patching and Walker’s pothole is gone.
The DOH appears to have done some patching to the first mile-and-a-half of Jake’s Run. The stretch is still rough and not every hole was filled. One large but not terribly deep hole was left, though holes around it were filled.
The DOH did not respond to requests for comment on what prompted the work or when exactly it was done.
Fleischauer, though, was pleased with the effort. “It doesn’t look that great, but it does the trick.”
Following that patched stretch, Jake’s Run is in good shape for a hair over three miles. It’s a smooth, easy drive.
But then, near the intersection with Mt. Harmon Road, CR 27, it turns third world at least as far as McCurdysville, which is where The Dominion Post’s tour stopped on the first and second visits.
The potholes on this 3.5 mile stretch are frequent and deep, some running 6 to 8 inches deep. As we said before, it’s generally impossible to drive much faster than 25 mph or stay in a lane.
In one stretch, you have no choice of avoiding potholes, no matter how much you swerve; you just pick which holes you want to hit.
Other stretches have half a lane or a whole lane with no asphalt. And two portions have no asphalt at all the entire width of the road.
Road signs indicate this is a school bus route, and it’s no doubt a bouncy ride.
On the state Department of Transportation website, https://transportation.wv.gov/Pages/default.aspx, you can find a link to the DOH’s Secondary Road Maintenance Initiative, which in turn offers links to planned road maintenance for each county, including mowing, patching, ditching and paving.
The April 15-June 30 Mon County list, which fills nine pages, shows that the first portion of Jakes Run, from mile .66 to mile 3.85, is slated for mowing and ditching and a contracted paving job. Completed takes are marked in red and none of those three have been completed, according to the list.
As previously reported, the delegates toured roads in eastern and western Mon along with consultants from Inca Roads. Inca Roads is preparing what it calls an Emergency Road Assessment – ERA – of Jakes Run and a road in eastern Mon not yet announced.
Inca Roads explain that an ERA is “a fast, low-cost, and simplified method for prioritizing roadways according to repair needs and accounting for high-severity distress quantities.” The report will be prepared at no cost and presented to the delegates, who will share it with the DOH.