How much is potholes and speed bumps costing you?

A recent article from America says that average motorist shells out USD300 (About RM1,200) per year due to pothole damages. But not all potholes and their aftereffects are created equal. Those costs can be much higher.

According to the American Automobile Association (AAA), pothole damages to U.S. motorists total about USD3 billion per year. On a per-pothole-incident basis, that works out to about USD300 per driver.

But depending on what part of your car was damaged those costs can vary quite a bit. Tires, wheels, suspension systems, exhaust systems, and car bodies are the most common casualties. So never mind the averages, what matters to most individual drivers is what will their pothole hit cost them.

pothole and speedbump

Malaysians already pay very high import taxes on cars and then we pay a high road tax every year to keep our cars road legal and yet we have pot holes and broken curbs and damaged sidewalks in our urban areas. The funniest thing is…..whenever a road is newly resurfaced it just takes a matter of weeks before a backhoe tractor is at work digging up a section of new tarmac (preferably a section where we drivers cannot avoid it) for underground work and then the patch-up job is like a badly baked custard pie.

avoiding pot holes
sport cars need to have this look to avoid being damaged by potholes

Why is it that the countries we mentioned above and let us add, Thailand also can have smooth roads allowing for vehicles to incur less damages and even more irritating…..rattling interiors. Yes, the rattling car cabin comes after years or even months of driving over pot-holes…which get even worse when it rains and we drivers cannot spot the pot-holes.

pothole and speed bump
Avoiding potholes are a common ‘game’ we play

The biggest damage from pot-holes to Malaysian drivers are as follows:

  • Damaged tire sidewalls which means changing tires
  • Damage to alloy wheels which can be repaired sometimes
  • Damage to suspension systems which means total replacement
  • Damage to lower steering arms which means total replacement
  • Damage to lower front spoilers or bumper lips which means repair and paint or complete replacement
  • Finally, the worse issue is possible accidents when you see the pot-hole at the last minute and try and avoid it and you hit another motorist or guardrail
avoiding pot-holes
drivers can have small accidents when avoiding pot-holes

This pot-hole situation is even more dangerous for the thousands or motorcyclists on our roads where hitting a small pot-hole might cause the rider to fall but if they hit a large pot-hole the consequence could be fatal.

speed bump damaged

So why are we unable to have smooth roads in our urban areas? We think it is a big conspiracy at work.

low rider
We cannot drive cars this low in Malaysia with costing us

Think about it. There could be secret meetings weekly between tyre shops owners, workshops owners in urban areas, small motorcycle repair shops and suspension suppliers urging road contractors to deliver badly built roads so that drivers and motorcycle riders will incur problems with their tyres, suspensions, mountings and more to keep business moving along nicely!

big biker
Big bikers need to avoid potholes to avoid accidents

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