Potholes, potholes everywhere

Today really felt like spring… sunshine and warmth and melting snow!  Unfortunately, spring in New England has a darker side, and that’s pothole season.

Pothole in downtown Franklin – early 2014. ©Franklin Matters

Potholes can show up at any time of year, but they’re most common around here in early spring, because of the freeze-thaw cycle.  When water seeps into cracks in the pavement and then freezes, the soil under the pavement becomes weak and can’t support the weight of traffic anymore.  The pavement cracks further, and traffic dislodges the cracked pieces, and then you have a nice pothole.  The more traffic passes over it, the deeper it gets, and the deeper it gets, the more likely it is to seriously damage your car and even cause an accident.

Cities and towns try their best to keep up with pothole repair, but potholes can literally appear overnight.  Other than driving carefully, the best thing you can do to help is to report potholes when you see them, since your town can’t fix a pothole it doesn’t know about.  Most cities and towns now have ways to report potholes and other issues (burnt-out streetlights, traffic lights that aren’t working, etc.) online, and Franklin is no exception – you can find their online reporting form here and here.  You can even download the Commonwealth Connect app to your smartphone to make reports on the spot from over 40 Massachusetts communities.  Drive safely, and enjoy spring!

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