Pothole Prevention is preventing potholes before they happen!  By sealing cracks early on and using preservation treatments, potholes can be prevented.

Watch a short 2 minute video on pothole prevention.


Pothole Prevention

Pavement preservation is pothole prevention! Most potholes can be prevented by using preservation treatments early on before severe distresses are formed. Sealing cracks in a pavement is the most important step in preventing potholes.

Larry Galehouse

Larry Galehouse (Director, National Center for Pavement Preservation)

“The time to solve the pothole problem is when the cracks begin to form on the pavement surface. Keeping water out of your pavements by keeping cracks and joints filled or sealed during the summer will go a long way in avoiding potholes the next spring”


How they are formed

How Potholes Form 1/Pothole Prevention

Potholes begin after rain or snow seeps into the soil through a crack in the pavement and flows below the road surface.

How Potholes Form 2/Pothole Prevention

The moisture freezes when temperatures drop, causing the ground to expand and push the pavement up.

How Potholes Form 3/Pothole Prevention

As temperatures rise, the ground returns to normal level but the pavement often remains raised. This creates a void between the pavement and the ground below it.

How Potholes Form 4/Pothole Prevention

When vehicles driver over this cavity, the pavement surface cracks and falls into the hollow space, leading to the formation of a pothole.


Preventive Treatments

Crack Treatments

Consist of placing specialized materials into prepared cracks to prevent water and incompressible intrusion into the cracks and underlying pavement layers.

  • Reduce potholes
  • Slow pavement deterioration
  • Slow crack spalling

Crack Sealing


Fog Seals

A light application of a diluted slow-setting asphalt emulsion to the surface of an aged pavement surface.

  • Help prevent water intrusion
  • Slow pavement deterioration
  • Improves aggregate retention

Fog Seal


Chip Seals

A thin surface treatment that combines one or more layer(s) of asphalt with one or more layer(s) of fine aggregate.

  • Help prevent water intrusion
  • Fill and seal pavement distresses
  • Minimizes reflective cracking

Chip Seal


Microsurfacing

A thin surface treatment that combines a layer of asphalt emulsion and finely crushed stone.

  • Help prevent water intrusion
  • Corrects minor rutting
  • Fast set and cure times

Microsurfacing


Articles

Pavement Preservation Journal – Control Potholes by Sealing Cracks, Joints in Advance

Asphalt Magazine – Preventing and repairing potholes and pavement cracks

Talking Transportation – Filling the pothole story

Pothole.INFO – Various Pothole Articles

TRIP – Pothole Release 2/27/14

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