The wild fluctuations in temperatures we're seeing this week not only take a toll on our bodies, they're no picnic for our roadways either.

All of this freezing and unfreezing causes pavement to expand and contract which eventually leads to one of our least favorite things to encounter when behind the wheel.

Potholes.

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Now you'd think with all of the extreme weather we get in South Dakota that we'd be high on the list of states with the largest number of pothole complaints in the nation.

Think again.

Stacker.com looked at data from the national transportation research nonprofit TRIP and the website The Clunker Junker and found that drivers in the Mount Rushmore State actually reported only one pothole per 1,000 kilometers of road (621 miles) - which is the fifth lowest in America behind only Idaho, Wyoming, Montana, and New Mexico.

STATES WITH FEWEST POTHOLE COMPLAINTS (per 100km of road)

  1. Idaho (0.4)
  2. Wyoming (0.6)
  3. Montana (0.8)
  4. New Mexico (0.8)
  5. South Dakota (1)
  6. Iowa (1.1)
  7. Arkansas (1.3)
  8. Kansas (1.8)
  9. North Dakota (1.9)
  10. Delaware (2)

So do we actually have an incredibly low number of potholes or are we just not so good about reporting them?

Drivers in South Dakota are able to get the latest road info on the state's Department of Transportation 511 website for up-to-date road conditions and construction information. The state also maintains what it calls a 'needs book', where data is broken down for every highway in terms of its condition and maintenance profile.

In all, 40% of U.S. roadways are in poor or mediocre condition, which contributes to the average cost to a single driver of $621 per year for vehicle repair and maintenance.

That translates to more than $140 billon when you factor in the total number of drivers in the United States.

STATES WITH MOST POTHOLE COMPLAINTS (per 100km of road)

  1. Rhode Island (23.4)
  2. Hawaii (20.6)
  3. New York (20.5)
  4. Massachusetts (18.7)
  5. California (18.4)
  6. New Jersey (16.5)
  7. Maryland (15.5)
  8. Pennsylvania (15.4)
  9. Connecticut (12)
  10. Florida (11.4)

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LOOK: See how much gasoline cost the year you started driving

To find out more about how has the price of gas changed throughout the years, Stacker ran the numbers on the cost of a gallon of gasoline for each of the last 84 years. Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (released in April 2020), we analyzed the average price for a gallon of unleaded regular gasoline from 1976 to 2020 along with the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for unleaded regular gasoline from 1937 to 1976, including the absolute and inflation-adjusted prices for each year.

Read on to explore the cost of gas over time and rediscover just how much a gallon was when you first started driving.

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