Pot HOLES, that is.
Given the more-frequent-than-usual freezes and thaws this winter, these mini-Grand Canyons have become an ever-more dire problem for GTA drivers.
I've encountered a few where I've almost had to gear down to drive out of them.
Can't really blame the road repair crews - I have to assume they're doing their best.
Last year, they fixed some 40,000 potholes, at a cost of about $3.5 million.
And when the crews DO get out there to fix them, they have to block various lanes of traffic which makes us even crankier.
They can't win.
There is a phone number to call to report a pothole - 416 599 9090, then push # (number sign) and 164.
If those who monitor this line think the pothole is serious, they'll try to fix it right away.
Otherwise it might take a few days.
Note that this is for City of Toronto roads only. Freeways are the responsibility of the province - try 416 235 4686 or 1 800 268 4686.
Surrounding regional municipalities presumably have their own numbers - if you live out in the boonies, it'll be the Internet to the rescue.
I also wonder - can the construction companies who build the roads in the first place be held liable?
Is there any sort of warranty on their work?
Also, I have a link here from Purdue University in Chicago that outlines a new pothole repair material.
Wonder if our Pothole People know about this?
Meanwhile, all I can do is warn you to be careful.
The problem is that looking down to avoid potholes is precisely what you DON'T want to be doing to drive safely; looking UP is always the preferred option.
Then again, driving with no wheels or suspension isn't very safe either.
BTW, there is no automatic City-financed repair of your car if it's damaged by hitting a pothole. Their first defence will be to have you tell it to your insurance company. Failing that - and with deductibles being what they are, it probably wouldn't be worth it - you have to submit your request in writing to the City Clerk's Office, City Hall, 100 Queen Street, Toronto, M5H 2N2, by fax to 416 392 1867, or by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Understand you will have to prove that the City was negligent, and that probably won't be easy.
So, take it easy, and pray for spring.