Montreal expecting bumper pothole crop this year
Published Wednesday, March 9, 2016 7:07PM EST
Last Updated Wednesday, March 9, 2016 7:11PM EST
Drivers, you know the feeling – you’re driving down the street, and you see it: a hole in the road, the size of a dinner plate, depth unknown. You check your blind spots but there’s nowhere to go, so you slow down, close your eyes and hope for the best.
It’s pothole season again, that time of year when motorists are forced to go to great lengths to dodge the craters that open up on Quebec’s roadways.
And if you live or drive in Montreal, it's not your imagination – 2016 has produced a bumper crop of potholes, estimated at about 115,000 across the city. Fluctuating temperatures and wet weather made this year's conditions worse.
“These are really, you know, the perfect storm of situations to unfortunately have potholes. Obviously we're doing as much as we can, we're investing what needs to be invested,” said Lionel Perez, executive committee member in charge of infrastructure.
It’s the worst “pothole season” garage owner Sydney Waithe has seen in years. He says drivers with mag wheels are especially vulnerable.
“They don't take much of a hit. The slightest pothole you hit, you bend the rim for sure,” said the owner of Centre Auto Syd.
Aside from tires and rims, suspensions also take a pounding from the potholes.
The real problem is the condition of Montreal’s roads. The city says it's busy fixing them and patching the potholes at the same time
Repairing potholes is the responsibility of the boroughs, but the city says because of the sheer number of potholes this year, it's helping out. The city’s budget for pothole repair this year is $3.5 million, up from $2.4 million last year.
The city is also spending an additional $9.5 million over the next three years for 10 more mobile pothole repair trucks. The patching will continue 24 hours a day for the rest of the month, but even with a repair blitz underway, garage owners are expecting to see even more damage in the coming weeks.