QOTD: Potholes, Dips, and Craters - Oh My!

Matthew Guy
by Matthew Guy

Our roads are a mess. It doesn’t seem to matter where in America (or Canada) one travels, there stands a very good chance that one will find crumbling infrastructure. In fact, the United States ranks eighth in the world in national infrastructure quality, behind Germany and the U.K., but above France and Canada, according to one recent study. Some days, it sure seems worse than that.

Which leads us to today’s question: what’s the worst road in your neck of the woods?

We don’t mean the most dangerous roads. Those are terrible, too, but often earn their badge through some combination of poor design and bad traffic patterns. No, what we mean in this post are the roads most likely to shoot a strut right through the hood of your car.

Back in June, Business Insider ranked a few states in terms of their appalling road conditions. New York was ranked eighth, laying claim to 114,365 miles of public road, 28 percent of them rated as being in poor condition. Heavy traffic (both in terms of weight and volume) combined with winter conditions that promote tarmac-warping freeze/thaw cycles all conspire to scupper the pavement in New York.

As a percentage, the same study reported that Washington, D.C. has the country’s worst roads, with a shocking 95 percent of the district’s 1,507 miles of public roads being classified as “poor.” As a function of basic math, small states which have a relatively low total mileage of public roads fared poorly in terms of a percentage.

Leading the way in terms of total miles of cratered pavement is California, no surprise for anyone who’s plied roads in the Golden State. About half of the state’s roads, which total nearly 200,000 miles worth, are said to be in poor condition, according to that same report.

What’s the worst road near your home? We’re sure there’s plenty of them.

Matthew Guy
Matthew Guy

Matthew buys, sells, fixes, & races cars. As a human index of auto & auction knowledge, he is fond of making money and offering loud opinions.

More by Matthew Guy

Join the conversation
3 of 78 comments
  • Sector 5 Sector 5 on Jan 22, 2018

    Where's that classic Citroen suspension? If only tojo could do it cheap & reliable.

  • APaGttH APaGttH on Jan 22, 2018

    Just about any non-arterial street in downtown Seattle, Belltown, South Lake Union, and Queen Anne is a complete $h1t show. It's a crater field of ruts, bumps, and metal plates from the endless construction. Heavy equipment and trucks have buckled the pavement, the city has no motivation to repave while massive construction is going on, and some of these streets truly resemble the roadways of Managua or Granada, Nicaragua. Roads are also covered in construction barriers and portable no-parking signs that investigation after investigation shows that construction companies are abusing to secure free parking for themselves. In many places outside of arterials, they are barely 2 lanes wide. I hate driving down there.

    • Dal20402 Dal20402 on Jan 23, 2018

      Eh. After dating a Baltimore girl for a while and doing the attendant driving in that city, I can't get exercised about anything I've seen anywhere in Seattle, South Lake Union chaos included.

  • Lichtronamo Watch as the non-us based automakers shift more production to Mexico in the future.
  • 28-Cars-Later " Electrek recently dug around in Tesla’s online parts catalog and found that the windshield costs a whopping $1,900 to replace.To be fair, that’s around what a Mercedes S-Class or Rivian windshield costs, but the Tesla’s glass is unique because of its shape. It’s also worth noting that most insurance plans have glass replacement options that can make the repair a low- or zero-cost issue. "Now I understand why my insurance is so high despite no claims for years and about 7,500 annual miles between three cars.
  • AMcA My theory is that that when the Big 3 gave away the store to the UAW in the last contract, there was a side deal in which the UAW promised to go after the non-organized transplant plants. Even the UAW understands that if the wage differential gets too high it's gonna kill the golden goose.
  • MKizzy Why else does range matter? Because in the EV advocate's dream scenario of a post-ICE future, the average multi-car household will find itself with more EVs in their garages and driveways than places to plug them in or the capacity to charge then all at once without significant electrical upgrades. Unless each vehicle has enough range to allow for multiple days without plugging in, fighting over charging access in multi-EV households will be right up there with finances for causes of domestic strife.
  • 28-Cars-Later WSJ blurb in Think or Swim:Workers at Volkswagen's Tennessee factory voted to join the United Auto Workers, marking a historic win for the 89- year-old union that is seeking to expand where it has struggled before, with foreign-owned factories in the South.The vote is a breakthrough for the UAW, whose membership has shrunk by about three-quarters since the 1970s, to less than 400,000 workers last year.UAW leaders have hitched their growth ambitions to organizing nonunion auto factories, many of which are in southern states where the Detroit-based labor group has failed several times and antiunion sentiment abounds."People are ready for change," said Kelcey Smith, 48, who has worked in the VW plant's paint shop for about a year, after leaving his job at an Amazon.com warehouse in town. "We look forward to making history and bringing change throughout the entire South."   ...Start the clock on a Chattanooga shutdown.