With contractors beginning to rebuild the Tillotson Avenue Bridge over White River and the Cardinal Greenway, traffic is not the only thing concerning drivers — so is the increase in potholes.
With the increase in traffic flow on some of the routes to avoid the bridge area, The Star Press reported stretches of West Jackson Street are "in dire need of pothole patching."
Muncie drivers are no stranger to potholes though. In fact, the potholes have been such a problem that a Twitter account was created to help handle pothole reports.
The account was created in 2014 as a way for citizens to report potholes to the Muncie Department of Public Works.
"A lot of people laughed when we started it and thought it was silly, but it’s a very simple way for people to send us something," Mayor Dennis Tyler said. "It’s very simple for the street department representatives to respond back that they’ve created a ticket for that pothole."
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Tyler said a contributing factor to potholes, especially in the Midwest, is the weather.
"Rapidly changing temperatures going from freezing to above 40 and 50 degrees with rain and then freezing again is just so destructive on our roads and streets because that moisture has no place to go like it used to," Tyler said. "Years ago when it would get cold and stay cold all winter, you didn’t see nearly the potholes that you see today."
Pothole repair cost all depends on the size of the pothole, Tyler said.
"It usually takes two to three people to run the piece of equipment," Tyler said. "It's very labor intensive because there’s a lot of work to get the moisture and the loose gravel out of it."
Right now, weather permitting, Tyler said there are at least two crews out every day repairing potholes. The city is even looking to purchasing its own hot mix. The necessary equipment, he said, could cost the city anywhere from $70,000 to $88,500.
For now, Tyler encourages drivers to report potholes when they see them in order to get the repair process started.
"The easiest way for us is for people to report them and give us some time to deal with them," Tyler said. "Potholes — they’re a way of life in the Midwest."
Potholes can cause drivers hundreds of dollars in repairs. Pothole damages annually cost drivers in the United States $3 billion, according to the American Automobile Association.
When junior telecommunications video production major Nora Hopf blew a tire on Wheeling Avenue, she didn't report it to the city, she called AAA.
"The next day I saw someone underground fixing something," Hopf said.
For anyone who has had car damage due to a pothole, Tyler said they can fill out a form in the City Clerk's office to be reimbursed.