The month of 12,000 potholes: How the Streets Department fixes a thawing Philly

Philly mechanics say pothole repairs seem to be up this year.

Philly mechanics say pothole repairs seem to be up this year.

Soon as the weather turns from freezing to tolerable, craters pop up on Philadelphia’s streets like zits on an unsuspecting teenager. Yep, we’re in peak pothole season. If you see one to report, call 311 or file online. The Streets Department promises to fix any reported pothole in three business days, and spokesperson June Cantor says the department has been living up to that standard so far, despite a relentless winter.

While you wait for your street’s blemishes to be fixed, here are a few things to keep in mind when it comes to Philadelphia potholes.

  • Expect the Streets Department to fill over 12,000 potholes this month. Last year in March, it filled 12,595 and filled 7,109 more in April. The slowest month for potholes last year was July. The Streets Department filled 1,257.
  • The Streets Department, Cantor says, is “reactive and proactive” when it comes to pothole repairs. It responds to reports of potholes but also seeks them out on the major Philadelphia roads it tends. When the Streets Department fills a requested pothole, Cantor says, it will also fill other potholes it sees on the same street. Last week, the Streets Department received 305 requests via 311.
  • No daily crews are dedicated full-time to filling potholes year-round, but 10 to 12 crews spend most of their time fixing potholes in March and April.

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