Boilermaker Blog

Pothole Pandemonium


Has anyone commented to you that this has been one long cold winter?
Besides producing bitter moods and heating bills that could bankrupt a small nation, Spring seems to be here and our first crop is blooming- potholes! It looks like this year we have a bumper crop!
This is not a Utica problem; it is a Northeastern United States problem. An older infrastructure (road, water and sewer) combined with a relentless freeze/ thaw cycle has been simply devastating.
As I have learned from someone far wiser than I; for very event a crisis or opportunity is created for someone. As I consider myself an optimist I will feature the positive views of these holes whose cousins are found on the Moon.
Why are potholes good?
Cash car!
One would think car service businesses are doing a ‘bang up’ business repairing tires, realigning steering and replacing low hanging mufflers.
Wow-that was exciting!
While potholes by their very nature can’t move, they certainly can sneak up on you. Is that merely a standing pool of water or something far more menacing? Often the first car sees the pothole at the last second and suddenly veers leaving the person following no opportunity to react. Certainly just another sensible reason not to tailgate.
These ‘silent sentinels’ have clearly slowed people down. The Parkway Memorial Speedway has (nearly) slowed down to the posted speed limit!
Pay attention!
New York has been conducting a vigorous anti-text, non hands free ad campaign (that appears not to be working judging by the amount of drivers I see yakking away or looking at their laps at stoplights) these potholes have really put some teeth into fighting distracted driving.
Why are potholes bad?
Paying the auto technician (see comment cash car above).
The filling of these road cavities will be but a final cost to our communities thanks to the Winter of 2013/14. I can only imagine that the cumulative costs of salt, DPW overtime and pothole repair will put the city and town budgets a bit in the hole (pun intended).
And on to runner’s problems…
So road races run on roads (thanks Captain Obvious), therefore these pavement pockmarks can make navigating the roads shall we say interesting.
Ever have the experience of running while a car near you hits a pothole containing say a washtub full of dirty cold water? This will invariably happen when you are running an ‘out and back’ run and you are the farthest point away from your house.
If potholes are a problem for cars tires, they are absolutely murder on a runner’s ankles (and perhaps feet, toes and knees).
The lack of navigable space on the roads now forces runners (and bikers) ever closer together; never a good thing for a runner as metal is a bit stronger than flesh and bones.
While these highway holes are certainly a nuisance at least it is Spring!!

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