Why Are Winter Pothole Repairs So Lousy?

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The difference between temporary and permanent pothole repairs illustrates how there are different kinds of asphalt. So why not fix potholes right the first time? We tend to think of road pavement, most of which is asphalt (some is concrete), as generic. In fact it’s not. And that’s why most municipalities dealing with winter potholes use a type of temporary pothole filler. Come spring and summer, road crews return with “permanent asphalt” to do permanent fixes. Which begs some obvious questions: Why fix something twice? Does that not double the…read more

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Potholes and Road Hazard Insurance: What’s Covered?

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Tire warranties and comprehensive/collision insurance might cover your pothole-related car damage costs. But each has limits – read the fine print, and alert your DOT when you see a serious pothole. The statistics on damage to cars from potholes across the US are staggering: a 2016 study from the AAA auto club found that American motorists shell out $3 billion each year to repair tires and vehicles that hit rough pavement. That works out to an average cost of $300 per repair. But what’s worse, AAA says that car drivers…read more

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Permanent Pothole Repair – In Cold and Water?

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Hot asphalt is more finicky than most people realize: It can’t fix pavement in cold and wet conditions. That’s why newer asphalt formulations were devised. It’s remarkable that asphalt has and continues to be so important in modern society. For all our technologies in a digital age, having flat pavement for cars, trucks, buses and bicycles is as important as ever. When potholes and lengthy road building activity slow traffic, it reduces the speed of commerce and takes time away from peoples’ lives. So how can America maintain its $2 trillion-plus investment…read more

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Pothole Predictions for Winter 2017-2018

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Accumulating historical data, particularly on El Niño and La Niña conditions, provide some idea on how the coming winter will affect us – and our streets. Predicting the weather is regarded as an inexact science. But from when the first Farmer’s Almanac was printed in 1792 until today, the tools for doing so have improved considerably. The wooliness of caterpillars, early geese departures, and rings around the moon are giving way to sensors, satellites, Big Data, and algorithms that give us a little more accurate reading of what we face in the…read more

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Innovation and Political Leadership Can Fix Potholes

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In her book, “Move: Putting America’s Infrastructure Back in the Lead,” author Rosabeth Kanter sees technology, privatization and political will as the answer to our crumbling infrastructure. Rosabeth Moss Kanter is not an expert on asphalt and potholes per sé. The Harvard Business School professor is a specialist in strategy, innovation and leadership for change. And she has some pretty big, strategic and innovative ideas and perspectives on the sweeping changes underway in transportation. Ultimately, potholes are a big concern to her – along with falling bridges, traffic congestion, and…read more

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