Pothole Season Has Begun

As we come out of the deep freeze and begin the cycle of warmer days and temperatures below freezing at night, Potholes will begin to develop in road surfaces that have been showing cracks.

As the moisture gets into the cracks and then freezes at night, that moisture expands, forcing the surface of the road to rise and break apart and traffic causes the potholes to form.  As the cycle repeats the potholes get bigger and motorists begin to notice.

The Missouri Department of Transportation says at this time of year, they can only make temporary repairs to the roads using a cold mix.  MoDOT says their priority is to fill the deepest potholes first.  The long-term fix, a hot asphalt mix, which isn’t effective until temperatures remain warm for a prolonged period.

MoDOT does have recommendations for drivers who are not able to avoid potholes when driving.

Try to slow down before you hit it. Other tips include:

  • Don’t brake directly over a pothole as this can cause more damage.
  • When driving over the pothole, hold the steering wheel firmly to avoid losing control.
  • Use caution when driving over a puddle of water because it might be a pothole in hiding.
  • Make sure your tires are properly inflated. Properly inflated ties hold up better against potholes than tires that have too much or too little air.

You can watch a video about potholes by clicking here.

Motorists can report the location of potholes on state-maintained roads using the following tools:

  • Call the 24/7 Customer Service Center at 1-888-ASK-MODOT (888-275-6636).
  • Use the Report a Road Concern form on the web at modot.org.
  • Use a smart phone/tablet with a mobile friendly form at modot.org/roadconcern.

Potholes on city streets or subdivisions should be reported to local city or county maintenance.

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