NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – The New Mexico Department of Transportation is asking drivers to watch out for potholes this spring.

A common way potholes form is via the expansion of water. Here’s what happens: Spring moisture and rains seeps into cracks in the roadway. Then, at night, if temperatures drop below freezing, that water freezes, expands, and forces the crack to grow. Repeat the process multiple times – and add in weight and vibrations from vehicles driving over the road – and you’ve got a pothole.

The state’s Department of Transportation (NMDOT) say they’re constantly working to try to maintain more than 29,000 miles of highways around the state. They use short-term patches when necessary, and long-term repairs when possible.

As the state’s workers try to keep up with repairs, NMDOT asks drivers to follow signs near construction zones and to reduce speed to stay safe. If your vehicle ends up damaged from a pothole, you can submit a claim to NMDOT by filling out this form (click this link) and sending it to Aaron Peinado at Forms must be submitted within 90 days of the damage.