Reimbursement for pothole damage to your car is possible

Reimbursement for pothole damage to your car is possible (Image 1)
Reimbursement for pothole damage to your car is possible (Image 1)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – With thousands of cars traveling on Tennessee's interstates each day, wear and tear on the roadways is evitable.

That, combined with all the cold, rainy weather in the Mid-State lately, creates a perfect storm for potholes, according to TDOT spokesperson BJ Doughty.

“It's a freeze-thaw cycle, followed by rain and so whatever breaks apart in that freezing and thawing, the rain just washes it out,” she explained.

The problem is that wear and tear could cost you a lot of money if your car is damaged. 

Most people don't know they can actually ask the state of Tennessee to pay part of their repair bill.

There is a claims process.  Anyone can submit one to the Treasury Department's Claims Administration.  Make sure to include all the facts in writing, including proof of damage and repair estimates.

The department will then decide whether there was negligence.

“Whether we knew there was a problem and hadn't fixed it or whether we had reasonable amount of time to go and address the area,” said Doughty.

However, the state turns down most claims.  Last year, only 21 claims were approved. 

Meanwhile, TDOT crews are trying to keep up with the rocky roads.

Doughty said, “We don't want motorists to have car damage and don't want [any] serious problem if there's a large pothole. That could delay rush hour traffic. We try to stay on top of them as best we can.”

Learn more about filing a claim against the state at TN.gov.

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