This week, City Council approved a $20,000 settlement to Portlander James Golleher, who broke his elbow after crashing his bike on a sewer cover (right) that had sunken below the street grade out on SE 78th and Henderson.
City Attorney David Landrum explains that these type of sewer caps settle down into the street surface over time. It had been decades since the city had repaved the outer Southeast street of the offending sewer cap, so it had sunk down several inches to become a dangerous pothole.
A study from OHSU last year found that poor roadways were responsible for 20 percent of crashes in Portland.
"We don't have a systematic street inspection program to look for potholes," says Landrum. Instead, the city relies on citizens calling in street problems. That's kind of sad, but if you see any kind of road problem, report it at 503-823-BUMP before someone else breaks an elbow.
Get the best of the Mercury each week in your inbox!