Pothole problems persist after freeze, thaw

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Sometimes you might feel like you have to have race car driver reflexes dealing with some of these roads after all of the changing weather.

It can feel like potholes are everywhere, and transportation agencies and tire shops are definitely seeing an uptick.

"Huge potholes, horrible for cars, tearing up front ends, horrible for wheels," said Cassidy Tire's Eric Skalka. "There's cracked wheels all over the place."

Skalka at Cassidy Tire on North Canal said his shop is getting a lot of business because of those big bad potholes.

"Usually I'm trying to bob and weave. It's worse when there's traffic and you can't. Yes. It's ridiculous," said Chicago driver Cyanna Nieves.

IDOT said it is also noticing a pothole uptick, so crews were out Friday patching them on the Eisenhower Expressway. They're warning you to watch out for lane closures through the Chicago area through Saturday as they try to catch up after the freeze and thaw.

On Chicago streets, "sometimes I would pass a pothole and I said to myself they need a cone here! It was that deep," said driver Beverly Goosby.

Drivers are still trying to dodge these demon potholes even as CDOT says they've patched 40,000 in the month of January - down from 57,000 year over year, according to their data.
But if you drive, you know. Changing weather can do a lot of damage.

"You also have issues with cracking wheels, cracked wheels. And a lot of times it doesn't show up right away, it's something that can show up over time," Skalka said.

So here's some advice from Chicago drivers.

"I try to dodge them, but you can't dodge them all," Goosby said.

"Be careful. Drive the speed limit, and just try to avoid them. Bob and weave," Nieves added.

The city is expected to get new numbers for February's pothole total next week. They are expecting to see an uptick after all of the freezing, thaw, and rain.

State pothole patching crews will continue repairs in the Chicago area Saturday morning from 6:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

In Chicago, you can report potholes by calling 311. You can track the repair status online using the city's Pothole Tracker.
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