MoDOT launches $15 million Pothole Patrol program

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- On Thursday, 300 trucks left MoDOT offices around the state in search of potholes while dispatchers watched social media to see all the places drivers had spotted them.

Why? It was the first day of MoDOT's new Pothole Patrol program.

"We posted something on our Facebook page -- if you see a pothole, let us know -- and we were almost overwhelmed," MoDOT Senior Communications Specialist Markl Johnson said.

Winter’s freeze-and-thaw cycle caused pavement to expand and buckle forming potholes.

Now, if you see a pothole on a state roadway, you can reach out to the agency on Facebook or Twitter or give them a call at 888 ASK-MODOT.

“We’re fixing potholes and moving to the next one, so we are in a moving operation, but we are moving very slowly," Johnson said of the the patch crews' work.

One of those crews was barely on the road for an hour Thursday morning when a dump truck came barreling into the crash cushion designed to protect them. A semitrailer then slammed into the driver side of the truck in the northbound lanes of Interstate 435 near Front Street.

The crash sliced open the diesel tank right below the driver’s door.

“There’s no telling what could have happened, but thankfully they came out alright," Johnson said.