Citizen Pothole Reporting Via Phone Apps Take Off, But Can Street Maintenance Departments Keep Up?

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The most modern of innovations, smartphone apps, are rapidly becoming a means to fix one of humankind’s oldest problems: potholes. And why not? Regardless of whether you were a fan of Isaac Asimov or the television show “Bewitched,” the futuristic/magical ability to point at a problem and fix it instantly (well, almost) is instinctively appealing. To do that, there are now several apps that combine the basic smart phone tools – cameras, the global positioning system (GPS) and a short-cut email function – which enable a single snap-send way to…read more

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First Cold, then Snow, then Potholes – The Cycle of the Seasons Begins Anew for 2011 in Philly, Baltimore and Washington D.C.

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The storms that hit the Philadelphia-Baltimore-Washington D.C. area in mid-February 2010 were largely predicted by the Farmers’ Almanac, months before they happened. Editor Sandi Duncan acknowledges their predictions were a bit off – they didn’t expect it would land as far south as it did, which was attributed to a stronger-than-expected El Nino effect – but she uses the case to support their veracity at long-range weather forecasters. The potholes that popped up in the wake of the storms, however, were fairly predictable. That’s because potholes happen every year, everywhere. Moisture…read more

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Winter 2011 May Bring Average Conditions – And Extraordinary Potholes – to the NYC Tri-State Region

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The La Nina weather pattern is in force in the Pacific Ocean off Chile, and that means less snow in the New York-New Jersey-Connecticut tri-state region. At least, that’s what the National Weather Service is predicting – a forecast that more or less concurs with the Old Farmer’s Almanac, which makes its predictions based on sunspots, tidal waves and astrological positions. Says the Almanac: “Colder than normal winter temperatures” will prevail, but snowfall slightly below average. But the question on the minds of all – once you get past the discomfort…read more

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2010-2011 WINTER WEATHER PREDICTIONS FOR NEW ENGLAND: Yankee Ingenuity Fixes Little Potholes Now to Prevent Much Bigger Potholes Later (Part 2 of 2)

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The weather predictions for the first part of the winter of 2010-2011 are coming in. Without question, in New England there will be snow, cold, rain, rain-snow mixes interspersed with fair and warmer days. In Massachusetts, there will be less snow than in Maine – mostly because Maine is bigger and further north. But suffice it to say, with precipitation, snow or rain or sleet come hazardous road conditions – both while the rain, snow and sleet fall and in the aftermath, because of the potholes they leave behind. The…read more

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San Francisco Road Repairs May Get Boost Through Proposition AA Votes on November 2

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In a year characterized by voters who resist government growth and increased taxes, seven of nine San Francisco Bay-area counties are proposing auto registration fee hikes in a voter referendum. Wherever Proposition AA passes – if it passes – drivers in those counties will pay an additional $10 per year. An additional $18 vehicle registration surcharge is being voted on in a separate statewide proposition (Proposition 21). What will the money fund? The county-by-county vote is to fix potholes and shore up public transportation. The maximum total of $54 million…read more

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