Hi, my name is Rider Ludrosky and I’m a sixth grader at Morgantown Learning Academy. In this paper I will be discussing West Virginia’s roads. The roads are atrocious. They need to be repaved, because I know from experience on my street we have giant potholes and they have ruined people’s tires. There are several reasons our roads are bad. West Virginia’s roads have been ravaged by big coal and natural gas trucks. The asphalt companies keep raising the price of asphalt. Many of West Virginia’s counties have half the required amount of workforce to man the road repairs.
West Virginia’s roads need to be repaired. In 2017, a report from TRIP ranked West Virginia’s roads fifth worst in the country. Bad roads are a problem because these roads cost drivers 1.4 billion dollars annually. This means that according to TRIP, each driver pays an extra 647 dollars per year for costs like damage, fuel consumption and tire wear. The government has a responsibility to fix the roads so they are safe and not expensive.
West Virginia’s roads have been ravaged by big coal and natural gas company trucks and weather. For the past fifty years, big coal trucks have been driving across West Virginia’s roads. In fact, 24 thousand trucks drive across our roads each day, says Charles Clements, a state senator in West Virginia. That has had a big impact on our state’s roads by weakening the road and causing them to fall apart. Also, the weather has a big big impact on our roads. In West Virginia last year, some of the more southern counties reached a new yearly rainfall record. Previously, it was 64.6 inches of rainfall but now it is 66.5 inches. So, what that means for our roads is more erosion on the asphalt, which in turn creates cracks in the road. The weather and big industry trucks create new cracks in the asphalt, make the cracks bigger, and eventually make new potholes. So, no matter how hard we try to patch the potholes, the cycle will repeat and require more money and more attention.
Another reason West Virginia’s roads are so bad is because the asphalt companies keep raising the price of asphalt. WV Metro News reports currently West Virginia is in a big lawsuit with the asphalt companies because a main company bought out the competition and then they raised the price a lot. Because of this increased price, the money that is dedicated for road repair and equipment doesn’t go as far. According to a Blue Ribbon Commission on Highways, it takes 750 million dollars a year to preserve our roads.
Another reason that the roads are in bad condition, is that we also need to find the workforce to fix the roads. WV Metro News reported that many districts in the state only have half of the workers needed to staff the roads. Without enough workers to keep up with road repair, the roads will get worse.
In conclusion, these are some of the reasons roads are bad. These problems need to be fixed before we can have good roads. All of these problems cost money to fix. I think that if we can find new funding to fix the state’s roads, we could have some very good roads. One idea I had for funding, is the state could keep some percent of the commission of sports betting for road repair only. More money can pay for supplies and workforce to repair the roads.
A bad pothole on my street.