There's more to potholes than meets the eye

Responding to high priority road hazards caused by weather eventsOur local road network has suffered significant damage following the February and March floods. We ask motorists to please drive to road conditions and be patient as we undertake the enormous task of fixing our roads.

We have logged more than 2,600 repair jobs across the Tweed and this does not include other road maintenance items, such as potholes, that were not the direct result of flood action.

For weekly updates on how the Tweed is recovering and rebuilding, please read our weekly flood recovery update.

You can also find more information about the progress of repairs on significant landslips on our roadworks and closures page – this includes slips at Scenic Drive, Tyalgum Road, Kyogle Road, Reserve Creek Road, Limpinwood Road and Mount Warning Road.

Thank you for your understanding.

Nobody likes potholes. They’re one of the most common resident complaints across the country, particularly after wet weather. How well do you understand what creates potholes?

Here’s a snapshot:

  1. Illustration of how potholes form Weather and heavy traffic create cracks and loss of texture in the asphalt surface. These are known as road surface defects. They’re a problem because the bitumen provides a waterproof layer that if damaged lets water into the pavement, which is the structural gravel that gives the road its strength. This is why potholes form after a lot of rain.
  2. Continuous rain and traffic create a hole under the surface, which is when the pothole begins to develop. In very wet periods water can also seep into the pavement from raised groundwater beneath.
  3. The asphalt or spray seal surface eventually breaks down resulting in a pothole.
  4. Our dedicated crews work hard to keep our roads open and safe throughout the year – and especially during prolonged wet and severe weather. They prioritise major safety hazards and high traffic roads as they fix surface defects (road maintenance) as quickly as possible to stop the road from further deterioration.

When the pavement is badly damaged we need to rehabilitate the road. This is when we bring in the heavy machinery, dig up the existing road surface and pavement and bring the road back to good as new.

Large scale road repairs are not possible during wet weather so our maintenance and rehabilitation crews patch potholes using the best available product.

You can report a pothole online. Please don't use social media to report problems or issues.

To learn more about how we build, upgrade and maintain a safe and connected local road network, including how we prioritise road maintenance projects, visit our roads page.

Download our print-friendly fact sheet(PDF, 232KB) on how potholes form.