See, click, fix. Canton utilizing mobile app to fix potholes, improve roads

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CANTON, Ohio — Potholes are everywhere, but one local city is having citizens use their cellphones to help fix the problem.

In northeast Ohio there dozens of cities, townships and neighborhoods are all actively engaged in filling in holes great and small when they have time to do so.  But, when the weather keeps changing, the holes grow like spring flowers and it’s hard to keep up.

“I bet we average from 350 to 400 a week,” said Canton Public Works Superintendent Steve Trzcinski.

Trzcinski said some pothole complaints are about the same hole or stretch of road, but you kind of get the gist of the numbers involved here.

He stated the most frustrating thing for citizens who report holes is that they don’t think anyone is paying attention.

Well, in Canton officials are reportedly listening. In fact the reports come right to the Trzcinski’s desk.

“We use an app called SeeClickFix. It allows residents to sign up for the app on their phone and allows them to see the pothole or any other problem. They see it, they take a picture of it and they can send it right from the app.” Trzcinski said.

Trzcinski said the phone app has already helped them tremendously because as complaints come in it also allows them to prioritize. A small hole can wait a day or so, while a rim rocker, which can shake your spine, blow out a tire or cause severe damage, can get repaired as soon as possible.

However, Trzcinski said what he likes best about SeeClickFix is that the app allows officials to communicate directly to the public.

“When it’s completed they come back in and and give it to the administrative assistant. They can go into SeeClickFix and see that it’s completed,” Trzcinski said

Other city departments also use the app to gather data on problems and come up with solutions to fix them. But, the concern right now is potholes.

Trzcinski explains that no road is ever perfect, but with some help they can be at least fixed.

The city also said it still takes phone calls about potholes and other problems but pictures, like those submitted through the app, really help them with prioritizing.

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