Why Your Local Potholes Aren’t Getting Fixed

Potholes are everywhere, no matter where you live. It doesn’t matter if you deal with snowy winters or 365 of sun, potholes happen in all types of weather, for all kinds of reasons. Some people don’t really care about hitting them because they don’t realize how much damage they can cause to your car. Other times they are just unavoidable due to traffic or other hazards. Whatever the reason for hitting them may be, potholes are far too common, and even when the cause car accidents they don’t seem to be getting fixed.

Potholes are dangerous

Potholes are a major hazard on the roadway, but they are so common that most people don’t take them seriously. After all, if roadway authorities aren’t concerned with repairing potholes, they can’t be that bad…right? While many people make it through damaged roads unscathed, others aren’t so lucky. Popped tires, bent rims, body damage, or even extensive suspension impairments are all on the list of expensive repair costs for problems caused by hitting these little blemishes.

28 January 2019, Brandenburg, Briesen: The car tyre of a Volkswagen can be seen on a defective asphalt road surface and is reflected in a puddle. Photo: Patrick Pleul/dpa-Zentralbild/ZB (Photo by Patrick Pleul/picture alliance via Getty Images)
The car tire of a Volkswagen can be seen on a defective asphalt road surface | Patrick Pleul/picture alliance

Too many to count

On your daily route you probably experience more potholes than you realize. In some areas it is easier to just accept the dysfunctional roads for what they are, and sometimes people will avoid roads all together if they become too dangerous. This is part of the problem that prevents potholes from being repaired — there are simply too many to get too. Across the country there are hundreds of thousands of potholes, if not more, and it seems like even after some of them are repaired they come back with a vengeance. It’s never just as easy as repairing a pothole and moving on, because new ones appear every day.

Pot holes in road surface 2017. (Photo by National Motor Museum/Heritage Images via Getty Images)
Pot holes | National Motor Museum/Heritage Images

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The cost of roads

Repairing potholes is not only time consuming, but it’s also very expensive. In some areas of the country roads can only be repaired during certain seasons, only to be ruined again by winter. Some roads are so damaged that they can’t be fixed by filling a few potholes but would actually need to be completely repaved. There simply just isn’t enough funding to keep up with the constant need for repairs.

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Maintaining roadways is expensive, and it’s like playing a game of wack-a-mole — you fill one hole in the road only for another one to appear somewhere else. The never-ending battle that is potholes will continue until engineers are able to design roads that are easier to maintain, or we find a new material to build roads from that requires less expensive or less frequent repairs.