How to Avoid the Pitfalls of Potholes

02 Apr 2021

Old man winter may be on his way out, but he’s leaving potholes in his wake. Unless you plan on never driving again or moving somewhere much warmer, pothole season is an unavoidable time of year in Northwestern Ontario. With that in mind, we’ve compiled a list on how to reduce and avoid pothole damage while keeping safe.

Avoid Puddles Water will fill potholes, masking how deep the hole really is. It’s best to avoid water-filled potholes if possible.

Slow Down High speeds will reduce your reaction time and odds of avoiding a pothole. Plus, the faster you’re driving when you hit a pothole, the worse the damage is likely to be.

Give Space Should the car in front of you fail to avoid a pothole, you’ll give yourself the time to react and avoid the same fate if you leave at least 3 seconds of space between you and the other driver. It will also reduce the chances of debris flying up and hitting your vehicle.

Make Sure Your Tires Are Properly Inflated Over-inflated or under-inflated tires are more likely to be damaged by hitting a pothole. Check your owner’s manual for information about your vehicle’s proper tire pressure, then make sure that your tires are inflated to match this recommendation.

Take a Break While you should try and slow down as much as possible before going over a pothole, release the brakes just before you go over one. Braking can cause your vehicle to nosedive, which will increase the load on its suspension and the impact force from the pothole.

Damages and injuries due to potholes are a common occurrence this time of year which is why it’s important to stay alert, and slow down to avoid costly damage and serious stress.

Matt Schottroff is the Marketing Coordinator for The Standard Insurance Brokers Ltd. and the host of the Passionate People video series. He lives and works in Kenora, Ontario.

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