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A common sight on Saskatoon streets. ((CBC))

City Hall’s annual pothole blitz is on as work crews try to fill in and smooth out car-crunching, road-rage inducing obstacles.

For the first time, citizens are able to go to the city’s web page to report potholes, and the response has been good.  The pothole site has been up and running for about three weeks now, and already the city has received more than 600 reports online. The details of each report are then quickly handed over to the crews out on the streets. 

'We translate all the information into a work order'—public works manager Pat Hyde

 

"We translate all the information into a work order that then is disseminated to the district crews that are looking after pothole repairs," said public works manager Pat Hyde.

That doesn’t mean reports get immediate action. Hyde said each pothole has to be prioritized.  For example, he said, a pothole on a busy street will get a more immediate response from patching crews than a pothole on residential roads.

City Hall has taken pothole reports over the telephone for years, and a little more than half of the overall number of reports are still filed over the phone. But callers sometimes find themselves waiting in a long queue of calls. The online system eliminates that concern.

Most of the online reports have been polite

Often, web based reporting systems prompt negative comments. But so far, the on-line pothole reports have been civil.  

"The majority of them have been very helpful, very to the point, in terms of the information provided, very polite," said Hyde.

Pothole patching crews in Saskatoon are making good progress on the priority roads in the city, and have begun to move into residential neighbourhoods.