The saga of slushy slurry seal on city streets continued into this week with more Land Park residents complaining their cars have been spattered with sticky black asphalt from a Sacramento road-surfacing project.
City officials, though, said on Wednesday they believe they have gotten a handle on the problem and that street work should be finished by Friday or Monday with no further issues.
City construction manager Nader Kamal said the city ordered the contractor on Tuesday to use a different material that dries – or cures – faster in cold conditions than the slurry product the company had been using. Colder weather in the last two weeks has caused the slurry’s regular two-hour curing period to extend to as much as seven hours, Kamal said.
Kamal said he also has ordered city inspectors to drive their trucks on each repaved street first to ensure that the road surface is dry enough for public travel.
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The city has told the contractor to finish partially done streets, then stop work for the winter. The Land Park repaving project and similar street surface seals will be completed when the weather warms next March or April, Kamal said.
Some residents also have questioned whether the material is carcinogenic coal tar. City spokeswoman Marycon Razo said the city contractor has been using an asphalt emulsion for the slurry seal, not a coal tar sealant. “We have confirmed with the contractor, as well as through the material safety sheet and slurry seal design submittal that no coal tar product is being used on the project,” Razo said in an email Wednesday.
Razo said the contractor is accepting claims from residents whose cars have slurry on them and is making cleaning arrangements. One Land Park resident last weekend said she noted 29 cars with slurry on them.