Potholes draining budgets and wallets - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

Potholes draining budgets and wallets

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Potholes have been causing some expensive problems for drivers and municipalities.

Crews were out Friday in West Springfield and several other communities trying to patch roads. Rob Colson, director of Public Works for West Springfield, said it was difficult trying to keep up with the problems.

Colson said West Springfield uses about 500 tons of material for patching roads at a cost of about $40,000. He said his crews worked a lot of overtime in the past few weeks because of the snow, and more now because of potholes. He said there would be some discussions with city leaders about their budget.

Colson said the city was looking at a different process of filling holes, but for the weekend they will use the old way of shoveling. He said crews would be out during off-peak hours Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

He said they were trying to get a hold of a milling machine for some roads because they were in such bad shape. Colson said water was the enemy and with temperatures going above and below freezing, the problem with potholes won't be getting much better.

Garages were reaping the benefits of the potholes. Tyre Trak owner Tim Andrew said he felt bad for the drivers but it was good business for him. He said a majority of the repairs from pothole were bent lower control arms. He said that repairs typically cost $350 to $400. Andrew said other common problems were tires, rims, outer tie rod ends and struts. He said the damage could run anywhere from $75 to more than $1,000 depending on the size of the pothole and how fast the car was moving.

He said the best thing to do to avoid damage from potholes was to slow down.

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