Why Are Potholes Dangerous?

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We talk a lot about potholes here on the Sunrise Asphalt blog. How they form, how they’re repaired, how water is the ultimate cause of a pothole and therefore the largest danger to your asphalt surfaces. But why do we care so much? Why are potholes dangerous? A number of reasons, including a few you’re probably not aware of!

Why Are Potholes Dangerous – They Can Cause Accidents

Potholes create a hazardous environment, not just for cars, but for motorcyclists, bicyclists, even pedestrians. Anybody who needs to use that road and is counting on it to be clear and sturdy, now has to deal with potential dangers from a pothole.

Common Accidents from a Pothole

  • A vehicle’s wheel becomes lodged in the pothole, causing the vehicle to swerve, lose control or even flip over.
  • A driver notices the pothole at the last minute, panics, and swerves to avoid it – creating an unsafe condition for driving and potentially causing an accident.
  • Someone walking across the street accidentally steps into the pothole and trips, potentially breaking a bone or worse!

Accidents aren’t the only things that make potholes dangerous, but they are perhaps the biggest fears. Even if the pothole doesn’t cause an accident, it still very well could do damage to the vehicle. According to AAA, potholes cost U.S. drivers about $3 billion (with a b!) in damages every year.

The Damage Potholes Do to…

…Tires

Potholes can do a number on your tires. If the force is great enough, if you’re going at a high enough speed and the pothole is sized just right, the force of it can burst a tire, or force the air in the tire to blow out the sidewall. If the tire doesn’t immediately lose air or burst, it could still do lasting damage inside the tire, evidenced by bulges on the sides. Unfortunately, there isn’t any way to repair a sidewall, it will need replacing.

…Wheels

Wheels and tires are different things of course and the potholes can do a number on these as well. If hit hard enough, potholes can cause bends and cracks in the side of the wheel. Bent wheels don’t roll like they should and the seal between wheel and tire will be compromised causing them to deflate. Check the wheel for any signs of pieces being broken off or dented. Those will need immediate replacement.

…Suspension and Steering

Sure, the suspension is made for smoothing out the ride, but when it comes to hitting a pothole that can be too much for it to handle! Potholes can knock your suspension or steering out of alignment, causing your car to drift to the left or right. This might be incredibly noticeable or a very slight drift that you have a hard time detecting – either way it’s bad news for your tires as they’ll take increased wear and tear.

…Engine and Undercarriage

Potholes can also damage the underside of your car as the vehicle passes over or bounces through them. The ragged edge of the asphalt can clip a hose or smash through metal that would have been safe and the road stayed nice and even.

Potholes Can Cost You 

All of that to say… potholes can cost you and more than just whatever it takes to repair them. If someone breaks a leg walking through your parking lot and tripping in a pothole, or their car is damaged from driving over them there is the possibility that you will be on the hook for damages!

Don’t risk it! Get a professional asphalt contractor out there ASAP to fill your potholes, repair your asphalt surfaces and restore a smooth ride for everyone involved. Potholes are dangerous for the body, the vehicle, and the wallet Work with Sunrise Asphalt and eliminate that threat today! Get in touch with our crew and we can give you a free estimate to repair your potholes. We’ve been serving the Tucson area for over 40 years – and we have the happy customers to prove it!