Pothole problem? Get ready to pony up

Published: Feb. 24, 2022 at 10:53 AM CST
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ST. LOUIS ( -- Yet another round of winter weather will continue to wreck our roads, creating pothole problems that can do serious damage to your car.

But who’s responsible to pay for it? The answer might be a little more complicated than you think.

“I didn’t even see it coming, I do try to look out for them, but I didn’t see that one coming at all.

Everett Wells got a flat tire last year when his car hit a pothole on a St. Louis City side street.

“You don’t expect a pothole to knock you out like that,” Wells said.

It was a similar story for Mark Schulte, this time on the highway in St. Charles.

“We hit it hard and we knew right away we were going to be replacing a wheel or a rim,” Schulte said.

But both men told News 4 they were surprised that both the city and the state said the agencies aren’t responsible for the damage, because neither pothole had previously been reported to them.

“If no one has called it in, they are not going to cover it,” Wells said.

A St. Louis City spokesperson confirmed they must have a service request that’s pending completion before they will consider a damage claim.

MoDOT’s and IDOT’s policies are about the same.

“The public pays a lot in state taxes and I feel they should be out checking for potholes on a somewhat regular basis,” Schulte said.

The city has said they’re doing their best, repairing 4,600 potholes last year.

In 2020, Modot patched more than760,000 potholes statewide.

Though the reimbursement policies are something both men would like changed, they just want other drivers to try to steer clear.

“Be alert, and be safe,” Schulte said.

To report a pothole that needs repair to MoDOT, click here. To report one to IDOT, click here.

And in St. Louis, you can contact the Citizens Services Bureau here.