Pothole season has begun and it's a bad one. Kent Barnard of the Minnesota Department of Transportation says that there are twice the number of potholes now as there were last year at this time. "We'll definitely see a bumper crop of potholes this year," Barnard said.
One of the things that makes this year particularly bad is the freeze and thaw cycle we've experienced. "During the deep freeze it won't continue to keep popping, but once it starts thawing up, the moisture will go back down into the pavement and that's what creates the pothole," Barnard said.
Hot-mix asphalt plants will open up next week, which will help crews patch roads more effectively. Right now, MnDOT is using cold-mix asphalt, which doesn't bond as well and patches sometimes pop loose, according to Barnard.
More potholes will emerge in March and April. You can report dangerous potholes to MnDOT here.
Learn more about patching potholes in this video from MPR News reporter Tim Nelson: