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Madison crews to patch potholes

Published On: Feb 11 2013 10:21:09 PM CST   Updated On: Feb 12 2013 07:29:33 AM CST

MADISON, Wis. -

The winter thaw and freeze means more work for city crews fixing potholes.

Madison will send six crews out to patch potholes all day Tuesday, and by the looks of things, some roads need the work.

Usually pothole problems happen in the spring, when the snow melts and water gets into cracks in the pavement. Then there's a freeze, and the ice expands and widens the cracked road into a pothole.

Potholes are popping up all over this week. Only one crew was at work Monday doing the most urgent repairs on the east side, but some roads in the downtown area are bad, too.

At Wilson and Blair streets, a worker described one particular pothole as a landmine.

"These potholes are almost like missing deer. You don't see them right away. All of a sudden they pop out and you break a tire or something," said Erik Hanson, a driver trying to avoid potholes.

"We always try to get potholes anytime we can in the wintertime. (Tuesday) it's going to be 30 degrees and sunny, so it's a great day to get potholes filled. We never want to get behind on them," said Stephen Schultz, Madison streets operations manager.

Madison doesn't receive many claims for vehicle damage as a result of the potholes.

The city received only three in 2010, five in 2011, and with the mild winter last year, not a single claim filed in 2012.

Complaints are another thing, and the city welcomes those because then crews can get to work fixing them. About 12 reports came in Monday. Weather permitting, the city said it will respond within a day.

The easiest way to report a pothole is on the city's website at www.cityofmadison.com/transportation/potholepatrol.

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