Who is responsible for property damage caused by a pot hole on an Interstate highway?

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Who is responsible for property damage caused by a pot hole on an Interstate highway?

My motorcycle suffered major damage after running through a 4″ deep by 5″ wide rut between lanes on an interstate highway, at night. The rims were bent so badly that the front tire blew out and the bike went down. Luckily I was able to avoid anything more than a few scrapes.Who exactly is responsible for this? Is this a state, federal, town issue? Or do I just go to my insurance company and let them figure it out (which I hate to do because of a high deductible and they will probably total the bike)?

Asked on March 27, 2009 under Accident Law, California

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 13 years ago | Contributor

If the accident is not your fault, the insurance company is prohibited from your raising your rates.  Contact your insurance company immediately.  They usually have as part of your policy an assigned counsel to you at no cost to you.  If they don't, you should still file the claim but contact an attorney, as well.  Try attorneypages.com.

Depending on who is handling the maintenance of that part of the highway, it would most likely be Federal or State, not city or county.  Look at the Caltrans website and see if it can offer you any help.


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