NIAGARA, Ontario, Canada --- If you think you've noticed more potholes than usual, you're not alone. Many cities in the U.S. and Canada are seeing -- and feeling -- more potholes this season because the exceptionally wet winter put so much moisture in the ground, and the expansion that came with freezing cracked the asphalt.

Potholes can pose safety hazards and lead to costly vehicle repairs. The Canadian Automobile Association in Niagara offers the following tips:

-- Slow down and release your brakes before hitting the pothole. Braking on impact may set up the tire and wheel assembly for a solid hit against the edge of the hole, increasing the probability of damaging your vehicle.

-- Don't swerve at the last moment. Turning on a 45-degree angle may lock your tire in the pothole, causing serious damage. As well, swerving in traffic can be dangerous.

-- Slow down. Hitting a pothole at high speed can cause internal tire damage.

-- Check your tire pressure regularly. An improperly inflated tire increases the chance of getting a flat when you hit a pothole.