March 11, 2019 06:31 PM
Evidence of the problem is scattered all over the roads, these days, in the form of plastic car parts and other debris -- casualties of an impact with a destructive pothole.
The daily freeze and thaw has potholes blooming across the metro, and some of them are deep enough to cause significant damage to vehicles.
Bruce Paulson from Eagan hit a big one on I-35W north near the Lake Street exit, Monday morning, and ended up with two flat tires and a big repair bill.
"It was a big boom," he said. "I got out of the car and it had taken out both tires on the driver's side."
"It was like turning the light switch off and on… it was just that quick," said Brad Solem with Bobby & Steve's Auto World in Minneapolis, talking about how quickly the potholes seemed to open up and started damaging vehicles, this week.
"The force has to go somewhere and one is the sidewall of the tire blows out, which is what most people see, and the secondary thing that can happen and the actual rim itself bends," Solem said.
Either way, drivers are looking at bills totaling hundreds of dollars, or more.
Minneapolis city officials say Public Works crews are already stretched thin due to the still-in-effect snow emergency, street flooding concerns and now the potholes that need to be filled.
Mike Kennedy leads the Transportation Maintenance and Repair Division for Minneapolis Public Works. He said some potholes will have to go unfilled until crews have more time. Right now, Kennedy said they're focusing on big problem areas where they receive the most complaints. He said drivers should report specific problem areas to help crews respond more efficiently and not waste time searching for potholes from vague complaints.
Officials say drivers reporting potholes is the most important thing they can do to help in the repair process, so here are a few links you may want to bookmark:
You can also alert other drivers to problem potholes and post photos to KSTP's Pothole Patrol map.
As for avoiding those repair bills for your vehicles, Solem offered some advice to help people avoid making a trip to his shop.
"My suggestion would be to give some room between you and the car in front of you so you can see that before it's too late," Solem said.
View a map of potholes throughout the metro area below:
Updated: March 11, 2019 06:31 PM
Created: March 11, 2019 12:45 PM
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