Spring has officially sprung and with that comes the unofficial start to pothole season in Edmonton.
The city prides itself on conducting pothole patrol throughout the year but now is the time when efforts really ramp up.
John Potter with the City of Edmonton’s transportation department admits so far, pothole numbers have been pretty good. But the warm days and overnight freezing in the past week or so, combined with last week’s snow, have been the perfect recipe for potholes.
“January, February – our numbers were down,” Potter explained. “With the most recent snowfall, the last 10 days or so, a lot of moisture, wet weather and freezing temperatures overnight… there’s been a few locations that have popped up literally overnight.
“They can pop up within a couple hours if we’ve got the right conditions.”
The city runs a 24/7, 365-day-a-year operation that switches between snow and ice control and pothole repair. With warm weather in the forecast, right now crews are focused on the latter. Potter said pothole complaints jumped a bit last Wednesday.
“When we’re not doing snow and ice control, our staff is out filling potholes with cold mix or hot asphalt,” Potter said.
Local mechanic Brent Bell is also gearing up for the season. But for him, the focus is on repairing vehicles, usually split tires.
“When you hit the pothole, the tire can’t really take that abrupt hit so it just pinches it right between the rim and takes it right out,” he said.
“We know it’s coming every year,” he added with a laugh. “This is only the second car so far but that’s pretty early. Usually the snow is gone by the time this starts happening.”
In January and February of this year, city crews filled 8,375 potholes. During the same two-month period last year, 21,819 potholes were filled on Edmonton streets.
According to the 311 map, there are currently 84 open pothole complaints in Edmonton.
There are several ways to report a pothole in Edmonton. You can call 311, report it on the City of Edmonton’s website or report it on the 311 app.