Potholes form when snow melts, seeps into pavement cracks, then refreezes, expanding and popping out the blacktop. Photo courtesy: AP
ROCKFORD, Mich. (WZZM)-Pothole season has officially arrived in West Michigan.
Crews with the Kent County Road Commission shut down a portion of Northbound U.S. 131 near 10 Mile Road Saturday to seal cracks that could lead to potholes.
Potholes form when snow melts, seeps into pavement cracks, then refreezes, expanding and popping out the blacktop. Based on current conditions, the road commission is expecting a busy season.
"There's a lot of frost under the pavement. It looks like it's going to be a very rough pothole season. Weather plays a big factor, how fast it warms up, how much rain we get. But with the snowmelt that continuously seeps into those cracks,[it] saturates the subsoil, makes it soft, [and] makes potholes. So the conditions are right. The recipe is right for a tough spring season of potholes," says Jerry Byrne, maintenance supervisor of the Kent County Road Commission.
Another February thaw problem is local flooding. Byrne says homeowners can help the road commission by clearing catch basins and drains near their homes.