Crack Sealing in Seattle
What is crack sealing?
Crack sealing is a commonly used preventive maintenance activity for pavement. Crack sealing prevents infiltration of water and other materials. This extends the life of the pavement.
When water seeps through cracks in the pavement it can freeze, expand and damage the pavement.
Crack sealing helps reduce structural deterioration, minimize pothole formation, and can prevent pavement distresses. It helps maintain streets in good condition, postponing the day we need to repave or rebuild them.
Crack sealing typically happens in the summer to mid-September when conditions are relatively dry and there is little chance of rain. The crack seal process for a particular block is typically done within a day.
The roads that are selected for this preventive maintenance are rated as relatively in good condition (with surface cracks but no structural deterioration), based on SDOT’s latest pavement condition assessment of Seattle’s arterial streets, using the pavement condition index (PCI) rating for the streets.
Typical cracks filled by crack sealing
The 2015 program will begin in May and continue through August/September.
Locations of 2015 Crack Seal Program
SDOT’s 2014 Crack Seal Program filled over 80,000 linear feet (LF) of pavement cracks. If you lined up all these cracks end to end, they would stretch over 15 miles. That’s about as far as the northern border of Seattle at Shoreline all the way south to the South Park Bridge.
The impacts of crack sealing are minor compared to a repaving project, but there are some impacts.
PARKING RESTRICTIONS: The work area covers from curb to curb, so parking will be restricted on both sides of the street during the day(s) of the crack sealing from 7 a.m. – 5 p.m. “No Parking” signs will be installed 72 hours prior to start of work. The parking restrictions are typically removed as soon as SDOT crews complete the maintenance work.
SCHEDULE: Weather permitting, SDOT crews plan to start the crack sealing operation in early May. “No Parking” signs will be installed at least 72 hours prior to the start of work, which provides a good indication of the timing of the upcoming work. If you need more information regarding the schedule, please contact us.
LANE CLOSURES: There will be no full street closure during the operation. SDOT will keep one lane open in each direction. Lane closures may last approximately 3 to 4 hours. Traffic flaggers will be present during maintenance work. Sidewalks will remain open at all times.
ACCESS TO ALLEYS AND DRIVEWAYS: Access to driveways or alleys may be disrupted for a few minutes during the day of the work, but SDOT crews will work to minimize any delays and will provide assistance as needed.
If you have any questions or comments on the crack seal program you may
For Street Maintenance 24-hour emergencies, please call: 206-386-1218.