DOT patches up Anchorage roads following rainy summer

After one of the wettest summers on record, Shelby said, the rainfall has left state roads scattered with potholes.
Published: Sep. 26, 2023 at 7:41 PM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - State road maintenance crews were hard at work on Tuesday patching potholes on a northbound onramp to the Glenn Highway. After experiencing one of the wettest summers on record — nearly 10 inches fell between June and August in Anchorage — the roads in Alaska’s largest city are receiving some much-needed care before winter.

“We’ve had a particularly rainy summer and so we’ve seen a slightly higher-than-average number of potholes this summer,” Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities spokesperson Justin Shelby said.

According to the DOT, the increased rainfall during the summer washed away layers underneath the road, creating more opportunities for potholes to form. Potholes can occur anywhere, according to Shelby, but they most frequently occur on older roads or roads that have more traffic.

If left untouched, Shelby said potholes can cause more damage to the street and to vehicles.

“The quicker we can get these problems addressed the sooner we can prevent them from becoming larger problems,” Shelby said.

Depending on the extent of the damage to the roadways, crews can expect to work at dozens of locations in a single day.

“It really depends on the problem that they’re addressing — they can address several larger problems area throughout the day or up to 40 different locations in a given day,” Shelby said.

Mayor Dave Bronson said the city has not been experiencing an increase in complaints.

“We track our data and we have not heard that,” Bronson said.

Shelby said the public can help by reporting any potholes by emailing

“As we get into winter, our maintenance crews are going to move into their winter maintenance operations and they’re going to be primarily focused on plowing and keeping the roads clear. So we want to address as many of these potholes as we can now,” Shelby said.