Potholes cause headaches for drivers, road repair crews - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Potholes cause headaches for drivers, road repair crews

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NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

The moisture and freezing temperatures this winter have meant road crews for Metro Public Works and the Tennessee Department of Transportation have been in a constant battle against potholes.

"It's the worst year since 2011," said TDOT District Supervisor Burel Tidwell.

Roads with a lot of heavy traffic tend to get the most potholes, and snow-removal chemicals don't help either. Tidwell said crews will repair 50 to 100 potholes after each big weather event.

"After we get a big event or a big rain, it takes about three or four days to get fixed back up," he said.

Potholes form after traffic damages the pavement, allowing water to seep into the cracks. The water then freezes, expands and, ultimately, breaks up the surface.

If your car is damaged by a pothole, you'd probably love to send the state the bill. However, the Tennessee Claims Commission is likely to reject the claim unless the state knew there was a problem and didn't fix it - something TDOT works to avoid by fixing the big potholes the same day people report them.

"No, we don't pay it. We try to get out as fast as possible. I know we have potholes, but we do the best we can do," Tidwell said.

AAA says that across the country drivers spend nearly $5 billion on car repairs each year from damage caused by potholes.

If you see a pothole in Nashville, call Metro Public Works at 311 or 615-862-8750. You can also fill out an online report at this link: http://www.nashville.gov/Public-Works/Forms/Request-Customer-Service.aspx.

To report a pothole to TDOT, call 615-350-4300.

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