38ºF

Potholes popping up earlier than usual due to record rainfall

VDOT explains why potholes are repaired permanently during spring

ROANOKE, Va. – It's not pothole season, but they're already starting to pop up, especially on secondary roads.

When it comes to roads, water is the enemy.

“Potholes form when water seeps into the pavement and then it freezes. When water freezes, it expands. The pavement will eventually cause potholes to form,” said Jason Bond, spokesperson for the Virginia Department of Transportation.

Bond said with all of the rain combined with temperatures going up and down, VDOT crews are seeing potholes earlier than usual.

“Usually we would see conditions like this in the springtime,” Bond said.

In order to repair potholes permanently, road crews fill them with hot asphalt.

But during the winter months, the asphalt plants shut down for the season.

“We patch those potholes with some cold patch material,” Bond said.

He said sometimes it holds, and sometimes it doesn't.

“We don't always know how long that material will last. So we re-patch potholes when we see the cold patch material work its way out,” Bond said.

If you see a pothole, it's best to go around it if possible.

Otherwise, you could burn a pothole in your checkbook with repair expenses.

“You're talking anywhere from $50 to as much as $200 per tire,” Tony Weikle, owner of Certified Collision Repair, said.

With this year's record rainfall, crews are struggling to address all of the road concerns.

Bond wants to encourage everyone to be patient, as crews are working as fast as they can.