A chip seal is designed to extend the life of pavement. A heated asphalt liquid is sprayed on the road and then covered with small stone chips. The surface is then rolled or compacted so the chips embed into the liquid asphalt. Traffic is allowed to drive on the chips for a few days before the excess chips are swept from the surface by the Contractor. Chip sealing roadways acts to enhance safety by improving skid resistance, providing a moisture barrier for the underlying pavement structure and slowing the deterioration of pavement from the effects of sun and moisture. It also slows or reduces the severity of cracking, roughness and rutting.
It should be noted that winter plowing activities will cause some loss of the chip surface which will be deposited in grassy areas along the shoulder of the roadway. The stone chips can be raked and disposed of or if left in place they will work their way through the grass and down to the ground surface after a few mowings. The Town will not send Public Works employees out to clean up loose chips from winter plowing operations.