One in ten drivers sustained vehicle damage bad enough to need a repair after hitting a pothole during 2021, according to a new survey from the AAA.

With an average price tag of almost $600 per repair, the organization estimates damage caused by potholes cost drivers $26.5 billion last year alone.

The AAA has issued the following advice to drivers to reduce the risk of pothole damage:

  • Keep your eyes on the road as an alert and cautious driver is less likely to hit a pothole.
  • Scan the road ahead for potholes and if it’s safe to do so, drive around any in your path.
  • Standing water or puddles may disguise a deep pothole. Avoid driving through standing water when possible but if you can’t, drive through slowly and treat them as though there may be potholes hiding beneath the water.
  • There may be times when you cannot avoid hitting a pothole. In that case, safely reduce your speed as much as possible and avoid braking abruptly, particularly as you go over the pothole as this compresses your suspension and adds extra force to the tire.
  • If you hit a pothole, pay attention to any new or unusual noises or vibrations. If you detect something is off with your vehicle, take it to a trusted repair facility for a full vehicle inspection as soon as possible.