Charleston Co. using technology to determine road conditions

Charleston Co. using technology to determine road conditions
This van, which will be driven all over Charleston County, is equipped with multiple cameras and lasers which work together to determine the smoothness of the road and the pavement texture. (Source: Live 5)

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Charleston County officials say they are working on a high-tech way to determine road conditions.

Several of our Live 5 News viewers have filled out our ‘What’s Driving You Crazy’ form with complaints about roads that need paving or need pot holes filled.

This week, Charleston County officials met with representatives from ARRB Systems to talk about their new technology that would ultimately help combat these irksome potholes.

ARRB Systems says they have two vans that will be driving throughout the county on 1,900 miles of county roads, municipal roads and state-secondary roads. They say each van is equipped with multiple cameras and lasers which work together to determine the smoothness of the road and the pavement texture.

A 3-D camera on the back of the van can find cracks of 1 to 2 millimeters in the road, ARRB Business Development Manager Eric Botting says.

Charleston County Pavement Manager Mackenzie Kelley says the county did this kind of assessment about five years ago and it’s time to do it again. She says she wants taxpayers to know this is done to get an objective perspective on which roads need the most work.

“It’s important they understand we have this verifiable data to have an objective approach to make our plan,” Kelley added. “We’re not just going out and picking the road someone is telling us to pave or that’s getting the most attention. These are roads that are ranked, verifiable we know they’re the worst or where they fall in line.”

Kelley said it’s also important to look at the roads determined to be in good shape to make sure they get some upkeep as well.

“Everyday traffic and weather have a significant impact on our roads; identifying and measuring pavement conditions now will help us avoid bigger issues on our roadway network down the line,” she added.

“It takes the subjectivity out of it,” Botting said.

The county is paying ARRB Systems $203,800 for this work which is supposed to wrap up in February.

“Roadways and pavement are probably the most expensive and valuable assets a local government owns, and ARRB is proud to help Charleston County proactively protect it,” ARRB Chief Operating Officer Nathan Kebede added.

You can let Live 5 News know what’s driving you crazy on Lowcountry roads by emailing traffic reporter, Abbey O’Brien, at aobrien@live5news.com or you can fill out a form by clicking: this link.

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