News Online: City braces for pothole season

Published online at on February 10, 2011.

Linda Hoang, Global News: Thursday, February 10, 2011

City braces for pothole season

Edmontonians can expect to see a lot more potholes in the coming weeks.

The up and down temperatures the city has been getting has resulted in a freeze-thaw pattern that’s created perfect conditions for the creation of the small and in some cases, very large craters.

City officials say water runoff from large windrows will only add to the pothole problems this spring.

“It’s difficult to say but we’re probably heading towards a bad season,” said Al Cepas, city pavement management engineer.

But crews are trying to keep ahead of the problem.

Since January crews have already filled 4,000 potholes. That’s the equivalent of about 75 tonnes of filling material.

The city says getting to windrows on main routes should help lessen the damage of the upcoming pothole season.

“If we can remove a lot of the windrows beside arterials over the next couple of weeks we’ll probably reduce the potholes that can happen,” Cepas said.

“On the other hand, if mother nature gets too warm for us and melts all that stuff before we can get it off the roads then obviously water will be present to form potholes.”

Cab driver Mekonen Hadera, whose been navigating Edmonton roads for 20 years, says he’s never seen potholes like this before.

“Too many holes. The road is not straight. Up and down, I’ve had a lot of people complain,” Hadera said.

“This year is the worst I’ve seen.”

If your vehicle is damaged from hitting a pothole, you can submit a claim to the city.

In 2009, just over 350 claims were made but the city covered only 17% of them.

Last year the city paid $38,380 in pothole claims, which averages to about $750 per pay out.

About 400,000 potholes are formed each year. In 2007 the city filled nearly 600,000 holes.

Click here to report a pothole online.

Click here to read the article on the Global Edmonton website.

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