Breaking News
More () »

TDOT: Reports of potholes increased 67% from 2022, after hotline was released

Potholes can form when precipitation moves into an area and freezes, causing it to expand and poke holes in the pavement.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — In 2022, the Tennessee Department of Transportation released a hotline for people to report roadway safety hazards, including potholes.

Since launching that hotline, TDOT said reports of potholes have increased by 67% compared to 2022. They said that after three months into the year, there were 125 pothole patch requests in Knox County.

"We want the public to let us know what they see in their area, and if they have any concerns. And quite often, that concern could be potholes," said Mark Nagi, a spokesperson for TDOT.

The hotline number is 833-836-8349, or 833-TDOT-FIX, and the call center operates Monday through Friday, from 6 a.m. through 6 p.m. Callers can leave a message about any reports they have if they call after hours, or on the holidays.

Nagi said that when crews go out to patch potholes, they often work close to traffic. He asked drivers to be careful and slow down if they see crews working near traffic.

"Our crews are working a foot away from oncoming traffic, and it's very, very dangerous work," he said.

Drivers can also fill out a maintenance request form online if they spot a hazard on the road. They should make sure to park their car in a safe spot before filling out the form.

"You're going to look like you've been drinking if you try to dodge all the potholes around here," said Colin Chamberlain, from Fisher Tire Company in Knoxville.

He said that his company sees up to 20 people per week who have pothole damage.

"I was on the interstate, and I was going, and I hit it and I cracked a rim," said Armon Johnson, who said his car was damaged due to a pothole. "My mom gets mad at me because I don't dodge them."

He said it cost around $200 to repair the damage to his vehicle's rim. 

Potholes usually form as a result of precipitation freezing underneath the road. As the water expands and turns to ice, it can lift some of the pavement. Then, once it melts, a hole may be left behind that may damage cars. The holes can also form over time if precipitation wears down the pavement's ability to support the weight of traffic.

Before You Leave, Check This Out