Vehicle Damaged From a Pothole? Good Luck in Connecticut
The worst potholes in Connecticut happen in our large cities. Yes, there are potholes in Southbury, Middlebury, and even Bridgewater, but Waterbury, Danbury, Hartford, and Stamford streets seem to suffer the most.
The potholes are popping up everywhere this week, we just had a couple of intense snowstorms, and now we're getting into that time of year when Connecticut goes from 19 degrees at night to 55 in the day. This freeze and thaw is what causes ice heaves under our roads, and voila, potholes.
We talked about potholes this morning on our show, and Lou mentioned that right now, the Exit 5 on-ramp to 84 East in Danbury is atrocious. There are so many speed-bump patches and potholes on that corner, you feel like you're going to bounce right into the guardrail. When we spoke with Danbury Mayor Dean Esposito recently, we brought it up. Esposito told us something that we didn't realize - the State of Connecticut is responsible for the upkeep and repair, and each municipality is bound by the State of Connecticut incredibly detailed section 13a-144 of the Connecticut General Statutes.
You're probably familiar with that particular rabbit hole if your vehicle has ever been damaged by a pothole, and you've contacted the State or town to seek reimbursement for the damages. The process will test your patience, to say the least. Was the pothole reported? To which agency? Did you file a report with the police?
I hit a brutal pothole on Pierpont Road in Waterbury, I thought I got hit from behind. My Forester bottomed out so bad, this thing had to be at least 6 inches deep. Did it dent my frame? Did I get out and look? Take a photo of the pothole? Go to Waterbury's website and file a claim? No, because I've done it before, and it came back as "This is not reimbursable, sorry.'
Potholes have to menace for weeks, and the city and state must both receive numerous documented complaints, before any pothole in Connecticut becomes actionable. It really sucks if you're the first to hit one sometimes.