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Highway and Road Transportation
Shoddy U.S. roads and bridges take a toll on the economy
Shoddy U.S. roads and bridges take a toll on the economy

It was a beautiful May afternoon when Donnel Gomes took his week-old silver Mercedes for a spin into the city. He turned onto Broad Street, a main thoroughfare downtown, and … kaboom! The car fell into a huge pothole, blowing its right tire, ripping the front axle and knocking out the air-bag system. Cost: $3,800. "It was a wreck," said the 48-year-old electrician, although he reckoned he got off easy compared with a motorcyclist whom Gomes saw thrown into the air after hitting a crater on another downtown street. "A damn minefield," he said of traversing many of Providence's roads. Rhode Island has an unusually large share of shoddy highways, streets...

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