Pothole problem worse this year than last, PennDOT says

Published: Mar 26 2013 08:00:00 PM EDT   Updated On: Mar 27 2013 06:41:01 PM EDT

Had enough of the winter that won't go away? Your car probably has.

A parade of smaller storms has brought about a pothole problem in Pennsylvania, and PennDOT said the best it can do right now is a temporary fix. 

The company that PennDOT uses to get material for the permanent fix hasn't started production this year because of the late snow storms. That means drivers need to be more aware on the roads to prevent car damage.

Just drive around and you're bound to see them. Some drivers said running over potholes has cost them a pretty penny this year.

"I did get a couple of flat tires," said Angie Gomez, of Allentown.

"I think they are spending too much money on other things than fixing the streets like they should," said another driver in Allentown.

"It's slightly above average this year," said Ron Young, a PennDOT spokesman. "It's a little worse than last year."

In 2012, PennDOT spent $2 million fixing potholes around the region. Crews are ready to start fixing more this year, but so far they have only been using cold patch.

"A lot of the plants still aren't in full production yet for the construction season," said Young. "So cold patch is a temporary fix, so to speak."

The problem is the temporary fix lasts only about three weeks depending on traffic patterns. Until they can make a permanent fix, drivers need to be cautious, officials said.

"Report them when you can," said Young. "If you can't and you know they are there, just try to avoid them. Obviously, you don't want to leave your travel lane of oncoming traffic to avoid a pothole."

If you see a pothole, you can call 800-FIX-ROAD for state roads. Workers said it takes about three days to fix a pothole once it's reported.