The worst potholes in the world – take the Gadling tour

Join us on a tour of the worst potholes in the world – and find out which American city makes many third world countries look like a bunch of amateurs with their potholes.

Harare, Zimbabwe

According to its residents, nowhere in the world is the pothole situation worse than in Harare. Unlike potholes that just make your ride a bit bumpy, their potholes actually attempt to swallow your car.

Chicago, IL

Chicago is on par with many third world countries when it comes to road repairs.

Not only does the city have 100’s of miles of poorly maintained roads, they also lack the money/manpower/will/interest to repair them.

The city keeps telling residents that they have crews working around the clock, but try telling that to the 1000’s of people who need to buy new wheels for their car after hitting one of these monstrous holes. Chicago even has a special portion on their web site where drivers can file a claim for pothole damage.

Yes – the city of Chicago is so behind on their pothole repairs that KFC decided to fill the holes themselves, and use the whole thing for a bit of goodwill generating PR.

Colombo, Srilanka

Colombo is one of those cities where potholes morph into sinkholes. Large amounts of rain scour the ground from under the roadbed, and the result is the kind of hole that can swallow a car.

Another Colombo pot/sinkhole. Thankfully it doesn’t look like any vehicles were lost in this thing, but you can clearly see some damaged pipes and other infrastructure in the massive hole.


Bad combination – super relaxing island and the kind of pothole that will really put a dent in your day (and wheels). It is bad enough when you hit one of these things with your car, but popping the front wheel of your moped or bike in them is enough to turn your bike seat into an ejector seat.

Michigan potholes from hell

I’ll let this video clip speak for itself.

New Orleans, LA

It’s not really fair to criticize New Orleans for their potholes – the city is still recovering from Katrina, but that doesn’t make this pothole less impressive. Notice the car tire on the left, showing just how deep this thing is.

Xiamen City, China

Ouch. The only thing worse than hitting a killer Chinese pothole, is hitting one when a photographer is standing there waiting for you to go flying, just so he can snap a great picture.

Liu Tao was criticized for not warning cyclists of the danger lying ahead of them. If you enjoy seeing people get hurt, or just want to know how the fall ends, check out the other photos at the source article.

In Russia, pothole drive you?

Funny how you can make almost any video interesting by adding some snappy Greek music to the background!

Kiev, Ukraine

I’m not sure whether this pothole appeared out of the blue when people were coming down the road, or whether these cars were simply parked in the wrong place at the wrong time. But it sure looks like an expensive mess.

New York, NY

For the final pothole in this lineup, what better place than New York City? Seriously, when the potholes get this big, you may be better off leaving the car at home and sticking with public transport.