For many people, a pothole in the road is just a minor inconvenience. Your average sedan or SUV driver might just run over it without a second thought, and even sports car drivers will handle them haphazardly. Potholes can jostle passengers uncomfortably, but they can also do a substantial amount of damage to your car, or even cause major car accidents. Whether you realize it or not, potholes can be harmful and dangerous.
Don’t judge a pothole by it’s…appearance
Even when potholes are empty we can never quite judge how bad they are. From a distance, we might not even notice them, and sometimes by the time, we do it is too late. As we drive up to a pothole we can’t properly gauge how deep it will be, especially if it is filled with water or dirt. Deep potholes can cause immediate, extensive damage, but wide potholes can be just as bad. Whether you think a pothole will be bad enough to cause severe damage or not, the best policy is to avoid them as much as possible.
Different kinds of damage
Besides immediate body damage from dipping into the pavement, hitting a pothole can cause a lot of expensive mechanical problems. Potholes are a large culprit when it comes to bent wheels. Bent wheels can give you a rough driving experience, and they often fail to hold enough air pressure to safely drive. Suspension components like the shocks can be damaged by harsh jolting motion and can need complete replacements. That’s a lot of money to waste in damage you didn’t need to have.
The potential for accidents
Potholes can cause accidents in multiple ways. Drivers that are aware of the potential damage might panic when they approach a damaged area of the road. A panicked driver trying to avoid damaging their wheels and suspension might swerve, or spontaneously change lanes to avoid it and consequently hitting another car. Hitting a pothole can send your car off in a different direction, and you could hit another car before you have time to regain control of the steering.
Potholes are one of the biggest road hazards that people commonly avoid. After all, it is hard to avoid something that is so prevalent on the roads. Roads in northern states that experience significant temperature variations throughout the year and are exposed to salt are notorious for being rough. Damaged roads are a problem that we simply can’t seem to keep up with, and with the cost of road maintenance as well as the extensive amount of work it takes to repair roads, or best bet is to just avoid potholes as much as possible.