For many the first sign of spring is those dreaded potholes. We all look forward to the snow and ice melting but lurking beneath the surface are these destructive forces that wreak havoc on our cars just as much as salt does. Mark Barman from MnDOT has been researching with the help of a team of civil engineers from the University of Minnesota Duluth. They took a look at the potholes in their area and the various materials and methods used to fill them. They hoped to answer, which one is good for what? To get that answer, they spent two years measuring potholes and tracked different fixes.
"Now our maintenance crew knows which one works best," Barman said. Now don't worry, crews won't be on the side of a road, thumbing through a 200-page report. Instead, MnDOT simplified it with flashcards.
Yes, flashcards. Based on the type and size of pothole and weather conditions. And they're going statewide.
"Our local agencies have also asked to use some of the results of this research to help their maintenance workers make decisions," said Sue Lodahl, MnDOT Assistant Maintenance Engineer. "The best repair is the one we don't get a call on because that means it went right."
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