ST. CLOUD -- A mid-winter warm-up has meant an earlier start to the pothole season. St. Cloud Streets Maintenance Supervisor Tom Zabinski says they've been out patching potholes for about three weeks now. He says they usually don't get started until sometime in March.

Warm temperatures and recent rain showers has caused the bone-crunching craters to appear sooner than normal. But Zabinski says so far, it doesn't appear this season is any worse than other seasons.

Zabinski says they are having more luck with newer equipment which allows them to reheat asphalt from the summer rather than the cold mix typically used this time of year. He says no pothole patch is ever perfect however, and they expect some to open up again.

If you know of a bad pothole or a bad stretch of roadway, the city wants to hear from you. You can call the pothole hotline at (320) 650-2949 or report it on the city's website. You're asked to give as detailed location as possible, including any nearby address.

Potholes on state highways must be reported to the Minnesota Department of Transportation at (320) 223-6500.