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potholeTRENTON, NJ – New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) Commissioner Diane Gutierrez-Scaccetti today announced the annual statewide campaign to repair potholes across New Jersey will begin on Wednesday, March 4.

Potholes are created by water seeping into cracks in the asphalt and freezing. Although this winter has not seen much snow, we have experienced a significant amount of rain and freezing rain.  When combined with the fluctuating temperatures it has resulted in many potholes on state highways.

“NJDOT crews work year-round to repair potholes and keep our highways in good condition, but at this time of year it becomes our primary focus. We are launching the New Jersey Department of Transportation’s annual pothole campaign on Wednesday, March 4,” Commissioner Gutierrez-Scaccetti said.

To deal with potholes in the most aggressive and efficient manner, the Department will be allowing crews throughout the state to close travel lanes where necessary during daytime hours.  Where possible, crews will limit their daytime work hours to 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and will try to avoid working in travel lanes carrying traffic in the peak direction during peak times.

It is important to slow down in work zones so NJDOT crews can safely make repairs. New Jersey’s Move Over law requires motorists to move over if it is safe to do so when they approach an emergency or service vehicle stopped on the side of the road.

As the weather warms up and asphalt plants reopen, our crews will start to perform permanent patch operations on particularly problematic sections of roadway. This is more extensive work that includes milling and paving a small area of the road, and generally will be done overnight.

In the past five fiscal years (FY15 – FY19), NJDOT has repaired on average 217,645 potholes per year. So far in FY20 (July 1, 2019 – February 29, 2020), NJDOT has repaired about 116,025 potholes, with the busiest pothole repair season just starting.

NJDOT will be using Variable Message Signs to alert motorists of the campaign and, to the extent possible, of lane closures that could result in temporary travel delays. Detailed current repair locations will be posted on a continual basis on www.511nj.org.

In addition to our crews monitoring and reporting potholes that need repair on state highways, we encourage motorists to report potholes as well.  Motorists may call 1-800-POTHOLE or go online at www.nj.gov/transportation to a convenient form on our website to report potholes on state roads. To report potholes on county roads, contact the appropriate jurisdiction.  The Department responds quickly, especially to reports of potholes that create safety concerns based on their size and location.