Both the Halifax Regional Municipality and the Nova Scotia government are asking for patience from drivers as public frustration mounts over the number of potholes on local roads.
According to the HRM, nearly 1,000 cracks and craters are left on the repair list as the snow melts and gives way to spring. City crews have repaired more than 1,600 since November, said spokesperson Brynn Langille, and will continue their work strategically.
That means the persistent pothole in your neighbourhood may have to wait a little longer.
“Priority roads meaning any of the main arterial streets within the municipality, certainly any roads that lead to hospitals or other important destinations,” she told Global News.
“They’re also repaired based on how bad they are, so any high priority potholes would be considered potholes that have a depth of more than eight centimetres.”
Last year, the HRM repaired 1,578 potholes between November 2017 and March. It’s on track to spend all of its annual $200,000 budget for potholes, as is the provincial government, which has a coffer of roughly $500,000.
Both say it’s an “average” year for potholes, even if it seems like there are more of them, now that they’re more visible.
“We’re in a time of year obviously where potholes are manifesting themselves quite quickly,” said Kevin Peachey, executive director of maintenance and operations for the provincial transportation department.
“…To the general public I would ask them to just be patient with us, our crews are out in full force working on these potholes as we speak, going through our levels of service and meeting the ones that need to be done first.”
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The province doesn’t count the number of potholes it repairs, keeping tabs instead on the amount of cold mix in goes through in a season.
And while many drivers have taken to social media to express their irritation with the crawling patch up work, Peachey said the province doesn’t keep track of what’s said on social media. To get a pothole fixed quickly, he advised them to file an official complaint.
“The province will respond to complaints that we receive and follow our criteria as dictated there, posting signage and fixing them within the defined amount of time,” he said.
Pothole repair can be fluctuating temperatures, which allow water to seep into existing cracks in the road when it’s warm, freeze when it’s cold, and then expand to create even larger gaps.