Drew Darby - "This great economic discovery comes great economic challenges, and reality is that we can't develop this type of oil play without necessary investment in our infrastructure. of course we have roads in west Texas, but we don't have roads that are built and designed to carry and sustain the weight and size of these oil tanks and frack tanks that sort of thing,"
Karen Threlkeld - "With the weight of the extra vehicles on the road, not only in the truck traffic but in the increased over sized over weight loads is that the base of the road was not designed thick enough to handle the actual weight of the traffic."
Roads around the area designed specifically for vehicular traffic, only have a 20 year life, but of course with the added weight their life span has dramatically decreased. TXDOT's Public Information Officer Karen Threlkeld says the traffic increase was expected but not this fast.
Karen Threlkeld - "We certainly had an idea that this was coming but I think that it is happening more quickly than what we can really keep up with at this point. TXDOT has always been proactive in the mode of maintenance because we know that the maintenance of the roads is more efficient, cost effective and efficient than having to be reactive. But unfortunately at this point we have to be reactive because it is happening so quickly, and we are asking the legislature for some additional funding and meanwhile we are using our maintenance sources as best we can to repair the damaged roads."
Drew Darby - "We have already started looking at finding immediate money to help with safety issues, we are going to start putting those bids out for improvement sometime this spring."
Darby says the bid will help fund over a billion dollars worth of repairs needed today for county roads that the state has responsibility of maintaining, and another billion dollars on roads that the county has an obligation to repair.