NEW YORK—Mayor Bill de Blasio grabbed a shovel and filled a gnarly pothole with steaming asphalt Thursday to mark a record that should reassure many a driver—the most potholes filled so far this year than ever before in the city’s history.
Seven snowstorms have covered the city’s roadways with layer after layer of snow, breaking a record for the most snowfall ever. As each snowstorm began, so did a massive effort to clear the streets and keep the city moving.
Plows kept on grinding the roadways. Buses and other vehicles had chains strapped on, adding to the road damage. As the snow melted, the water seeped into the cracks. As that water froze and expanded, the cracks grew bigger. The freeze-and-thaw cycle over the past several weeks created a huge number of potholes. Repair crews patched 113,000 so far this year.
Complaints via the 311 call center are coming in faster and faster, according to Department of Transportation Commissioner Polly Trottenberg.
“A car can hit a pothole and spin out of control. Obviously there’s untold damage done to vehicles by potholes,” de Blasio said. “I said this to the crew–every time they fill a pothole, they are protecting people’s lives, protecting people’s property.”