Arkansas’ roads may be free from snow, but as the precipitation melts a new danger rears its ugly head —potholes. They can damage your vehicle and cause major accidents. Crews from the Benton County Road Department have been working to repave the streets that are riddled with potholes, but Administrator Terry Nalley says there are so many it’s unlikely they will have the resources or the manpower to get to all the roads in time for fall.
“There’s going to be a lot of work that we’re going to be hard pressed to get everything done by September, October, when winter hits again,” Nalley said. “We have a full crew but we’re going to be real hard pressed because these roads have taken a toll this winter.”
If you must take a route with visible potholes, keep the following tips in mind to prevent as much damage as possible. You could even avoid an accident if you’re cautious enough.
- Leave room between your vehicle and the car in front of you. If you need to swerve to avoid a pothole it’s less likely you’ll cause an accident with more space;
- If avoiding the pothole is impossible, slow down. Don’t stop over top of the pothole, as this can cause even more damage to your vehicle;
- Make sure your tires are properly inflated. Tires that are under-inflated could pop if they hit the jagged edge of a pothole;
- Beware of puddles— that could mean a pothole is hidden below the water;
- Brake lightly when traveling over a pothole rather than slamming on your brakes;
- Hold the steering wheel firmly when driving over a pothole to avoid losing control;
How to Report Potholes
If you know of potholes in your area, share the information with state highway authorities to help others who may be traveling down the same stretch of road. Help other drivers expected the unexpected by giving Arkansas State Highway and Transportation officials a description of:
- The pothole’s exact location
- An approximate size of the pothole
- Whether you saw or heard rainwater in the pothole
It is also helpful to ask whether the pothole is on a public transportation route. Hitting a pothole can cause a serious accident, and any tips you can provide highway and transportation authorities with regarding any potholes you know of is helpful.