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Mar 13

Fishers DPW Recycles Asphalt to Permanently Fill Potholes

Posted on March 13, 2015 at 4:07 PM by Blog Admin

Spring brings sunshine, warm weather and…potholes.

Potholes are inevitable after long, cold winters. They form when water seeps into cracks in roads, freezes and expands, pushing pavement upward. With moisture underneath the surface, the road beds are softened every time a car goes over a crack. The cracks then fall in when heavy vehicles or cars pass over them, breaking the surface.


Last year, Fishers DPW purchased a batch plant that allows staff to save asphalt millings and recycle them to make the city’s own hot-mix asphalt. Cold mix asphalt is most frequently used during the winter season but it is only available in limited quantities and does not provide a permanent fix.

“The uniqueness here is the fact that in January at 15 below zero, the asphalt plants are all closed, so nobody is ‘cooking rock’ as they say, but we have the unique ability to do so,” said DPW director Eric Pethtel. “It’s not large scale, but it is proactive.”

dpw truck

Using the asphalt recycler makes Fishers DPW more efficient as potholes filled with hot-mix asphalt will not need to be refilled later in the spring. Cold mix asphalt is not ready for hot temperatures and will become brittle and break apart as temperatures rise.

Already, Fishers DPW has dropped more than 575 tons of asphalt on Fishers’ streets, 400 of which was produced by the asphalt recycler.

To report potholes, simply visit and click “Report it”. We rely on residents to help us identifying necessary road repairs.

Eric Pethtel, Director of Public Works 


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