They are one of the biggest hazards on British roads in the winter months, and a cause of the rise in insurance claims and car damage that happen without fail after the big freeze. Potholes are more than a minor irritation, they are a full blown hazard, and with so many opening up on the roads after all the pre-Christmas ice and snow, they are something motorists on the whole should no more about.
So, without further ado, we thought we would put together a little and rather educational guide on what actually causes potholes.
1. The road surface when laid is laced with imperfections. Air pockets, holes and cracks all exist where the eye can’t see.
2. General wear and tear, such as traffic travelling over the surface at high speed, can weaken the integrity of the road surface and make it more prone to potholes.
3. Winter weather tends to turn these imperfections into potholes – water gets into the cracks, and when this freezes it expands. The expansion widens cracks, and any rain washes away the gravel left behind. Eventually these cracks turn into minor potholes.
4. Whilst some potholes appear very suddenly, others will be gradually widened by the bumping of cars over the existing hole.
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