We hate to say we told you so, but according to a report in the Los Angeles Times, TRIP, a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit that studies transportation data and issues, has rated Los Angeles-Santa Ana-Long Beach as first among cities (with more than 500,000 residents) for the highest percentage of roads in poor condition and the highest annual cost to drivers — which here amounts to $800 per year. This study was based on 2011 data from the Federal Highway Administration. Read the complete L.A. Times story here.
We recently followed up with John Mares, who hit a pothole on Aviation Blvd. back on February 20 (see Aviation Blvd Pothole Causes Rough Landing).
In early July, John told me that “I called them last week, after 4-5 months … they said ‘Our claims take at least 8 months to process … call back in 60 days.’”
On August 6, he emailed me the following: “I finally heard back from the City Attorney, they denied my claim!” I told him to file an appeal.
Call the city attorney’s office and ask them why they denied it. They will talk to you about immunity laws and such. Tell them that you have records showing the city knew about the pothole (John had filed a Public Information request for any pothole reports or surveys they had for Aviation, and the street was repaved a few weeks after the incident, so he knew that the city knew about the bad street)). Email these to the investigator or ask to speak to the head investigator if you’re not getting anywhere. Contact your councilmember and the Mayor’s office as well. If all else fails, you can go to small claims court.
Today (August 13), we got the following from John:
“I was able to speak the City Attorney investigator who denied my claim.
After providing an additional photograph of the pothole and explaining my presumption that because the road was repaved within weeks of the incident that the City had to have prior knowledge of the condition, they have reversed their decision and are now processing my claim.
Per the Investigator, the city ALWAYS DENIES THE FIRST CLAIM.
Thanks for your help, guidance and advice. It looks like we’re done here!”
On September 26, John e-mailed me: “I got my check yesterday!”
Jack Khachatrian has reported a major pothole on Hyperion Ave., just before the Glendale-Hyperion Bridge in Atwater. The approximately 2-foot by 3-foot pothole, located next to the speed limit sign, has been there for several months. Jack hit the pothole, damaging a wheel and tire. He’s now filed a claim with the city; we’ll keep you posted.
From Toi Crawford:
I need your expert advice. I filed a claim with the city attorney in February for damage to my car and my claim has still not been assigned to an adjuster. I spent quite a bit on repairs. Please let me know how I should handle this.
The city likes to drag their feet in these matters. First off, do you have documentation that the city knew of the pothole? That will greatly help your case. But in any case, call the City Attorney’s Office and ask them about the status of your claim. That will help light a fire under them. Some people wait up to six months for a response — you’ve about reached that time frame. Call them.
I have been calling the City Attorney’s office every few weeks. I will also contact the street service department as noted on your web site. I will let you know how this works out.
Thanks in advance!
Last January David Delgado and Alexis.K. Marion — on separate occasions — had encounters with a pothole at 3rd and June streets. Well, thanks to LAPotholes, David and Alexis have had their claims paid by the city. Here’s what David wrote:
“It seemed like the case was delayed because it took about 2 months and i never heard anything. so i went to the Los Angeles Bureau of street services and got a copy of all the times that street was serviced. they then sent me a letter 2 days later where they disclosed that the city was going to pay and that was it.”
You also might remember the massive pothole in the alley behind Frank Barich’s property in San Pedro. Here’s the latest from Frank:
On 4/2/13, I made another call to: 1-800-996-2489 x11 and emailed email@example.com. The potholes were finally repaired 5/02/2013. Thank you very much for your assistance. I really appreciate your concern.
Remember the giant pothole on Fierro St. (cross street San Fernando Rd) in Glassell Park? We queried Jackie Ramirez to find out if the pothole had been repaired. Her response: “Yes, it has. Thank you so much!”
In the Sunday, May 5 edition of the Los Angeles Times — on the front page, no less, under the headline “L.A. full of roads to ruin for cars” — the city of L.A. was taken to task for its lousy streets. The paper applied its data-gathering expertise to the database of streets maintained by the Bureau of Street Services (which includes location, rating, street type and last inspection and repair), “mapped the data to neighborhood and council district boundaries,” and “found a wide disparity in road quality among the city’s 114 neighborhoods.”
And, in addition to their in-depth report, the Times put together an online interactive map that allows you to type in your address and get your street’s grade.
According to the report, “the city gives its road network an average grade of C, but the Times found differences not driven by wealth or political power — some of the poorest parts of the city have some of the best roads … But the average grade tells only part of the story. More than one-third of the streets in the city have a score of D or worse, meaning they must be resurfaced or totally reconstructed … The heart of the problem is aging streets, heavy traffic, undulating terrain and the sheer size of the network. The streets in the poorest shape tend to be in hillside neighborhoods, such as the Hollywood Hills, Mount Washington, Los Feliz and Bel-Air … For Angelenos waiting for their street to be rebuilt, abandon all hope: There is a 60-year backlog of failed streets — meaning residents might not see them fixed in their lifetimes.”
The main reason for the lack of repairs — too many streets, too little money.
On my way home from picking up my boyfriend (04/30/13), I hit a pothole on Fierro St. (cross street San Fernando Rd). The pothole was wide and deep.
Fierro St. is filled with potholes and it makes it very inconvenient for the businesses around. The street — compared to the neighboring streets — is in really bad condition. The potholes are deep and very noticeable. The address where it’s located: 3034 Fierro St., Los Angeles, CA 90065.
Frank Barich of San Pedro sent us the following information March 19; check out the amazing pothole in the alley behind his property.
As of early April, nothing has been done regarding the pothole I reported and it continues to worsen. As per your suggestion , I will take a photograph and post it to the LAPotholes website. Any further advice to expedite and resolve this issue would be appreciated. Thank you, again.
I am the property owner at 716 S. Walker Ave. San Pedro. I first reported this pothole January 9, 2013. My property (716 S. Walker Ave.) is adjacent to the alley near the reported said pot hole. I, as well as my tenants, use the alley daily for access to garages. The pothole is of such a large size that it’s almost impossible to avoid it. My tenants have reported damage to their vehicles.
On January 9, 2013: I reported said pothole. Confirmation #13001633.
On February 22, 2013: I called for an update and status. I was told it was on back log.
On March 18, 2013: I called again to request update and status. I was forwarded to Aiada. She explained the reported pothole was inspected and put on back log. Per Aiada, due to the shortage of repair vehicles in the area (twice a week), repairs for streets more commonly used take priority. She said she would forward the request to her supervisor, Derrick Brown, and confirmed my call back number and said Mr. Brown would follow up to report status.
March 19, 2013: 7:00 p.m. I have not yet received a call or message from Mr. Derrick Brown. I want to make sure the above matter is addressed as the reported pothole continues to worsen, not only for the safety of vehicles, but pedestrians as well.
On my way home from work tonight (February 20), I hit a pothole on Aviation Blvd. approximately 1,000 ft. north of Imperial Hwy. The pothole was approximately 4 feet long, 1.5 feet wide and 4 inches deep. The incident caused the sidewall of my left front tire to blow out, requiring me to replace the tire. I am in the process of getting the tire replaced (Goodyear Eagle LS-2 245/45R18 ROF). I will be sending in the receipts and making a claim when the repair to my vehicle is completed; I do not know if there is additional damage.
My Name is David Delgado and on Friday, 01/04/2013, while driving home from work, I unexpectedly drove over this pothole … fortunately nothing serious happened to my truck — but both right rims got damaged. This pothole is located at 3rd Street and June in Hancock Park.