Reporting on a pothole is getting easier, drivers must use their phones or the Internet

Negligence must be proven in damage claims

CLEVELAND - It's that time of the year once again, a time when most of us will have to do a little creative driving to dodge those bone-jarring potholes.

Fortunately, a growing number of cities, counties and state agencies are creating new ways for drivers to report large holes in the road.

A website called City Sourced is allowing residents to be more connected to their government entities, and allow drivers to file "incident reports" on issues in their counties and neigborhoods, this includes reporting on potholes.  City Sourced has established reporting sites in Lorain, Geauga and all counties here in Northeast Ohio.

Meanwhile, smaller cities like Lorain, Willoughby, and Cuyahoga Falls have started their own pothole reporting services.

Larger agencies like The Ohio Department of Transportation maintain extremely interactive website locations for the reporting of damage caused by potholes.

Consumers should  file a police report, take pictures of the damage to their vehicles and get two written repair estimates.

In Cleveland, you can call the vehicle damage claim hotline, 216-664-2671, weekdays 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

For claims which involve vehicles, including damage caused by potholes, claimants are required to submit the following documentation:

1.Completed claim form
2. Copy of the vehicle title
3. Insurance: Claimants who have full coverage insurance must provide information about the insurance including a copy of the declaration page, and indicate the deductible amount.
4.Two estimates of repair costs or an itemized bill
5. If applicable: Police or incident report.
6. For claims involving personal injury: Copies of medical reports, including doctor and hospital bills and pharmacy receipts

If available, witness statements, photographs of vehicle damages or of what allegedly caused damages.

In order for drivers to succeed in a damage claim, it must be proven the government agency was aware of the pothole, or the pothole had been reported, before the damage occured.

Allow several weeks for a ruling on your case.

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