After storms, California endures a pox of potholes

Drivers in California may not face rain this week, but potholes across the state caused by the recent storms pose new hazards.

According to Paul Gomez, a spokesman for the city’s Department of Public Works, requests for pothole repairs have increased in Los Angeles. There have been more than 3,100 such calls since December 30 – 1,542 of them in the past week alone. By Friday, more than half of the repair requests had been resolved.

Pothole problems aren’t limited to Los Angeles, of course.

According to a. A section of State Route 71 northbound near Pomona may be closed due to “urgent pothole repairs.” tweet by the California Department of Transportation. Meanwhile, crews in Fresno reported at least 30 areas with pothole problems, according to ABC30, and vehicles were damaged. And according to KRON4, a pothole on northbound US 101 in Redwood City damaged at least 25 vehicles.

According to a report by the American Public Works Assn. The two most important ingredients in creating potholes are traffic and water. The weight of the cars creates cracks in the top layer of asphalt, allowing water to penetrate, weakening the subgrade and the soil below until further traffic pushes the top layer into the layers below.

The term “pothole” comes from 15th- and 16th-century English potters who, according to the APWA report, used the ruts created by wagons and collected clay for pot-making.

Colby Wagenbach, 29, was driving south from his home in Westchester to Manhattan Beach on Sunday when he noticed a “tarmac build-up on the side” of Pershing Drive near Los Angeles International Airport.

The recent rain has left “puddles everywhere,” he said, causing potholes.

Drivers “would have struck [into] their steering wheels if they hit them,” Wagenbach said of the potholes, calling them a “problem waiting to be passed.” It was unclear if any vehicles had been damaged on Pershing Drive.

Wagenbach reported the problem to the Los Angeles Department of Transportation in a Twitter post. DOT referred him to the City Department of Public Works’ Office of Road Services, which takes reports by calling 311 or using an online form.

Those who hit potholes and suffered injuries or damage to their vehicle can make claims against Caltrans for up to $10,000.

Times contributor Rachel Uranga contributed to this report. After storms, California endures a pox of potholes

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