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Pothole Blitz: Buffalo city officials take advantage of warmer temperatures to address potholes situation

"The mayor's 48-hour pothole guarantee remains in effect."
filling the pothole.jpg
Posted at 6:42 PM, Feb 21, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-21 18:42:11-05

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — Driving around the Buffalo area must feel like trying to avoid land mines and sometimes even resembling Swiss cheese.

Rough road conditions can really do an expensive number on your car during the winter.

On average, it can cost you more than $1,800 annually to fix problems caused by road conditions.

The City of Buffalo commissioner of the Public Works Department, Michael Finn, addressed the "holey havoc", in a press conference, Monday morning.

Finn said the city was taking advantage of Monday's warm and calmer weather by sending out nine trucks to fill in the potholes.

"The mayor's 48-hour pothole guarantee remains in effect and we're continuously doing that throughout the year," Finn said.

However, some residents said they feel as if the city is not diminishing the potholes in a timely manner.

This is a large pothole located off the intersection of Exchange Street and Washington Street, Monday afternoon.

"When I was driving, in fact, a lot because I used to mess up my car a lot because of the potholes. They are everywhere no matter where you drive. A lot of them is more or less in the inner city," lifelong Buffalo resident. Spencer Lewis said. "A lot of main streets in the inner city, they are like the last ones to get dealt with and then they get the bear minimum of fixing it. They come out late in the fall. They throw in a little gravel in there, a little tire pellets and just leave it as it is. Now, all the cars come here and roll over it, it takes it away, by the time the winter comes, and the trucks come through here with the salts and the plows, you have potholes all over again."

Lewis said he traded in his personal car for public transportation, to avoid paying for the upkeep of his car from road damage.

"It's good to have a car but when you have to keep money into it because it gets destroyed by the streets, something that you're not doing yourself, then it becomes a burden," Lewis added.

The Public Works Department rolled out a fleet of workers from the sewer department to tackle the rattling potholes in the city, Monday morning

This is a Tweet posted Sunday evening, sharing what large craters Allen Street was donning.

Hours later, the potholes were filled.

Finn explained, "Allen Street has already been addressed, so the section that you likely saw was between Delaware and Elmwood, which is part of a construction project: the Allen Street Streetscape. There was a trench that had temporary restoration that where a lot of potholes form. The contractor addressed that first thing this morning."

Carrie Choboy, who lives in West Seneca but works in Buffalo, shared that it is like a never ending cycle and the city needs to do more than "band-aiding" the problem.

"It's that time of year again when there's potholes coming, when our temperatures fluctuate, but what I've noticed over the years and more recently is the amount of potholes there are and what they do to fix them. They just put patches in them, and then when cars drive over them they get worse, and worse all over again," Carrie Choboy said.

In January, Governor Kathy Hochul added a new $1 Billion operation for the state's "War on Potholes".

Contrary to what residents have shared, Finn said he believes things are in "okay" shape.

"I put a lot of that to we've had two years now of a very strong paving program. That's the best fix for a pothole. Resurface the road," Finn said. "Any potholes that residents see in the City of Buffalo, we ask that you call our 311 line. The best help that you can do is to be specific about where you're seeing the potholes. Use an address. A street corner."

Finn added that anyone who has a claim for damage on their car due to the potholes within the City, can contact the city's law department at (716) 851-4343.

Additionally, anyone who has pictures of potholes in their neck of the woods is encouraged to share it with 7 News by using the hashtag: #SeeItOn7.