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Posted at 2:10 PM ET, 01/19/2011

Pockets of Potholes

By Akeya Dickson

It's difficult enough tackling the morning after fallout of precipitation's middle child: the groan-inducing, not-quite-snow, not-quite-rain "wintry mix." Commuters already have to be mindful of pothole obstacle courses that can be difficult to traverse on the sunniest of days (*cough, cough* Minnesota Avenue).

But when the frigid elements come together to create potholes -- low temperatures, ice expanding in existing holes when freezing and the subsequent water that melts and washes away loose particles on already fragmented sections of the roadways -- motorists should be especially careful.

One such example is the "massive pothole" reported by See Click Fix member GH, "caused by water and tons of ice coming down the hill" onto the 5201-5213 block of Canal Road in northwest's Palisades neighborhood. The following are a round up of other potholes to navigate around, as reported by residents:

This pothole in the southbound lanes of Wisconsin Ave. at Montgomery Lane was a casualty of last year's snowstorm. (Photo by Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post)

>> A "dangerous and slippery" chasm at 900 23rd Street in northwest continues growing on the west side of 23rd and Washington Circle according to one Griper: the "hole always filled with water. Cars hit it and spray water onto pedestrians and sidewalk where it creates an ice sheet."

>> Another reportedly "massive" pothole lies just south of the intersection with Arizona in the 5200-5206 block of MacArthur Blvd. in northwest, also in the Palisades.

>> A pothole is reported in the right lane of Massachusetts Avenue in Bethesda's Westmoreland Circle, causing many cars to immediately lurch into the other lane, according to the Griper.

>> A Griper reports a pothole in a curve that is particularly treacherous for cyclists in Capitol Hill neighborhood between the 574 and 598 block of C Street in northeast. Navigating around the pothole is precarious "especially during rush hour [when] motorists threaten cyclists around this curve, where the lengthy pothole leaves little space for maneuver."

>> Two potholes were reported near 529 N. Piedmont Street in Arlington's Ashton Heights neighborhood. There's one pothole in the middle of the street and a second pothole on the edge of the street, which creates a damaging drop off for cars, reports awahoo2006.

>> A Griper reported a "large area of broken up pavement on the right hand side of the southbound lane on Massachusetts Avenue" in northeast near Constitution Avenue on Capitol Hill.

>> Jim B. and various Gripers think that a patch of the GW Parkway in Arlington near the Ballston-Virginia Square is beyond filling a few potholes. "GW Parkway, from [the] Key Bridge to [the] Chain Bridge needs complete re-paving," reported Jim B. "Pothole fixes for the past 3+ years aren't solving the problem."

>> The Daily Gripe noticed several potholes on Landover Road in Largo between McCormick Avenue and the on ramps to the Beltway.

>> Donincognito is frustrated about lingering potholes from last year's snowstorm on Arlington Blvd. in Arlington's Radnor-Ft. Myer Heights neigborhood.

"Potholes that developed after the snowstorms of 2010 have been patched in a manner that leaves the road just as bumpy as if the potholes were still there," wrote donincognito. "These patches are in the left lane of 50 WB where the onramp from the GWP merges onto 50. Please fix this properly; [haphazard] fixes are as bad as no fix at all."

See Click Fix member tennesseer submitted this photo of a lengthy pothole in a curve on Capitol Hill's northeast side.

George Dodson, with VDOT, looks out for traffic as Pothole Killers, a contractor with VDOT (Virginia Department of Transportation) emergency crews, fills near Braddock and Stone Roads on June 16, 2010, in Centreville, VA. (Photo by Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post)

By Akeya Dickson  | January 19, 2011; 2:10 PM ET
Categories:  Maryland, The District, Unfixed, Virginia  
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Next: Commuter Alert: Sherman Avenue now one lane

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