Glenn County is located in Upstate California approximately 100 miles north of Sacramento along Interstate 5. Glenn County Public Works maintains 862 miles of roads of which 700 miles are paved. The County is bordered along the east side by the Sacramento River and stretches west into the Mendocino National Forest to elevations of 6,000 feet.
This rural agricultural County has experienced flat line funding for maintaining roads over the past ten years. Four disastrous storms have wrecked havoc on Glenn County roads since 1995. With a road budget depleted to the max, Public Works Staff was looking for methods to stretch maintenance dollars for maximum efficiency. One of our “bags of tricks” is using Permazyme to stabilize the road base on our gravel roads.
Glenn County began using Permazyme in 1998 on select gravel roads. As with any new product, staff was skeptical of the claims of Permazyme. We soon became believers. The first application was on a gravel road in the valley with hopes of dust control. This was a crop road with heavy trucks hauling produce to market. Dust was reduced by about 50% but the spin off benefit was the 70% reduction in weeds growing into the shoulders. Another benefit in treating road base with Permazyme was the reduction in grading the road from three times annually to once a year. Wash boarding was also reduced. Since 1998, Glenn County has treated over 20 miles of gravel or dirt roads ranging from valley farm roads to timber haul roads at 4,000-foot elevation.
We have also treated over 20 miles of road base where a double chip seal asphalt surface was applied directly onto the treated road base. Permazyme treated base rock was placed directly over the aged deteriorated pavement and then incorporated into the road structure by pulverizing to a depth of 10”. Additional Permazyme and base rock were compacted into the top layer to then have a final double chip seal road surface application. This procedure has reduced costs roughly 40% over past practices. Glenn County looks forward to treating additional roads with Permazyme.