That crunching thud is all too familiar. You start swearing like a sailor when your car dips into yet another infuriating pothole. Will this one cause another blown tire? Did you just break an axle?
Nuisances of epic proportion, potholes are a global problem. $3 billion is wasted annually in the U.S. repairing pothole damage to vehicles. Great Britain estimates the cost to repair all potholes in the country would exceed $20 billion. More than 3,000 people are killed each year in India due to pothole-related accidents.
Despite the painful annoyance, gigantic costs, and even loss of life, pothole repair technology has been about as frustrating as the potholes themselves. Road crews toil away, pouring asphalt into broken concrete, which is an expensive and a temporary solution at best. Thankfully, an architecture and technology firm in Istanbul, Turkey named Dahir Insaat has a far more innovative approach.
Their invention is a fully contained pothole-crushing powerhouse. The large truck uses artificial intelligence, internet-enabled sensors, machine learning, and advanced robotics to stamp out potholes like garden flies. Instead of filling in the hole, this monster equipment precision-cuts out the pothole and an area around it, as if it were extracting a cancerous tumor. The machine vacuums up excess materials, leaving a clean hole of exact size. Next, its robotic arm grabs a pre-made concrete “plug” from onboard, and inserts the plug with the accuracy of a surgeon. The plug materials expand once in place, to create a form-fitting bond, as if the pothole never existed.
Besides being James Bond cool, the machine can repair potholes in less than two minutes at a cost savings of 500% versus traditional repairs. The precision plugs will outlast typical poured asphalt solutions by years, and also provide a smooth ride for motorists compared to the uneven patchwork of today. With the new speed, precision, and quality, potholes could be diminished to the point of urban legend instead of major headache.
Think about the ‘potholes’ in your own business. Those annoying and recurring obstacles that consume too much time, resources, and creativity. Do you continue to solve them in the same, ineffective manner, only to curse their existence as they continue to emerge?
Perhaps we can all learn something from the creative geniuses at Dahir Insaat. They refused to accept traditional approaches, choosing instead to break free from dogma in favor or progress. They embraced today’s advanced technology, shunned conventional wisdom, and invented a bold, new, innovative approach that creates a geometric boost in value.
Let’s stop wasting time patching our own potholes in the same, old school manner. Instead, we must invest the time to reimagine our approach. Redoing the way we work will ultimately make the work better, faster, and more effective.
I’m hoping the innovative new piece of road equipment will remove potholes from our roads. I’m also hoping that fresh, creative approaches can eradicate the potholes in our businesses, communities, and careers.