Snow-covered roads often hide a potential danger to drivers and their vehicles - potholes. While the street craters are boosting business for some auto repair companies, they are frustrating motorists over the damage to their cars and their wallets.
"I would say we are up about 25 to 30 percent in tire sales on an average," said Pete Getz of Concordville Auto and Tire.
In Philadelphia alone, there were 500 reported potholes in the first two weeks of the new year, according to PennDOT officials.
“This is an early outbreak of potholes,” said Gene Blaum of PennDOT. “We’ve had maintenance crews throughout the five county region from PennDOT basically working full-time on potholes.”
Officials say up and down temperatures as well as precipitation that freezes and then thaws in roadway cracks are causing the recent outbreak. Potholes on several streets, such as Woodhaven Road, Girard Avenue and the City Avenue exit on I-76 are damaging the tires of cars across the area.
But what many drivers might not realize - the city could pay for their vehicle damage.
The city has reimbursed drivers in the past and claims can be filed with Philadelphia's Office of Risk Management. The same form is used to file a personal injury claim.
The state, on the other hand, will not provide compensation to drivers for any type of property damage. For those who suffered an injury due to an accident, claims can be filed with the state's Department of General Services.
Officials with the city of Philadelphia told NBC10 their goal is to repair all potholes within 48 hours. PennDOT officials say their rough estimate is about 72 hours. PennDOT has about ten crews working citywide and three to four each in the surrounding five counties. They’re also urging drivers to report any potholes they see.
If you spot a pothole in Philly, call 311. If you spot one on a road in the surrounding counties, call 1-800-FIX-ROAD.