Hackel: Call 911 for hazardous potholes

By: Julie Snyder | Mount Clemens - Clinton - Harrison Journal | Published February 13, 2014

  The number and the size of the potholes on Macomb County roads will only increase as the temperatures steadily rise.

The number and the size of the potholes on Macomb County roads will only increase as the temperatures steadily rise.

Photo by Julie Snyder


MACOMB COUNTY — It’s nothing new when someone calls 911 for an issue other than a major crime.

According to former dispatcher, Macomb County Sheriff and current Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel, 90 percent of calls made to an emergency dispatch center are the result of a noise annoyance, traffic accident or a barking dog.

Or it’s concerning a hazardous road condition.

“I agree that you don’t call 911 for a normal pothole, and people know not to call 911 for nonhazardous potholes,” he said. “The concern is the damage-causing potholes. We’re stepping up our game in Macomb County, and the Road Department has agreed that those major potholes, the ones that are causing hazardous driving conditions, they will be taken care of within an hour instead of the normal 30 days. We’re talking about any community in Macomb County, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”

The number in Macomb County to call to report a hazardous pothole is 911. After the information is received from that 911 dispatch center, the Macomb County Department of Roads will take action, Hackel said.

“I want to encourage motorists to call 911 when they see damage-causing potholes, especially those on major roads,” said Hackel. “I want to thank the dispatchers and road crews of Macomb County who have committed to fulfilling this guarantee.”

The same goes for other potentially dangerous roadway conditions like a large rock in the roadway or a large object in the road like a piece of furniture that may have fallen from a moving vehicle, said Macomb County Sheriff Anthony Wickersham.

“Anything that could be a traffic hazard and cause a crash,” he said. “People, residents have always contacted us about issues such as those, and we contact the appropriate county department to take care of it. And that goes for those hazardous potholes.”

Hackel said there have been, on average, fewer than two 911 phone calls made each day about potholes in a recent week. But that average in a county of 852,000 residents will likely jump by leaps and bounds once the snow and ice begins to melt, creating more, even larger potholes on Macomb County streets and roads.

“Call in those, I’ll say it again, damage-causing potholes,” Hackel reiterated. “People who are calling have had their vehicles damaged, and they don’t want it to happen to anyone else. Now, the Department of Roads will fill those potholes immediately, and that’s a great statement to make for the people.”

To report a nonhazardous pothole, call the Macomb County Department of Roads at (586) 463-8671.