Raleigh woman says pothole totaled her car

Suzy Hooker said she was driving along Capital Boulevard on Tuesday night going about 45 mph when she hit the pothole.
February 24, 2013 3:20:40 PM PST
A Raleigh woman says a recent run-in with a pothole totaled her car.

Suzy Hooker said she was driving along Capital Boulevard on Tuesday night going about 45 mph when she hit the pothole.

Hooker said she was only able to drive about 1/8 of a mile before being forced to pull off into the nearest parking lot.

"I found there were three other people that were also on the side of the road changing their tires," Hooker said.

But for Hooker, solidarity in numbers was small consolation, given the extent of damage her car suffered.

"It blew both of my driver's side tires, it bent my rims, cracked my transmission, cracked my oil pan, shot my suspension, and ruined the alignment," Hooker said.

She said her insurance company told her it will cost more to repair the damage than the car was worth. Now she is fighting with the insurance company and is without a vehicle.

ABC11 spoke to NC DOT earlier this week, and they said they cannot comment on Hooker's incident in particular. However, they said what normally happens is if a motorist encounters a pothole, he or she is responsible for reporting that to the DOT, who is then responsible for fixing it in a timely manner.  

If that doesn't happen, someone whose vehicle has been damaged can file a claim for reimbursement. Those claims are then reviewed by the Attorney General. Claims are submitted on the DOT's website, on the same page where motorists can report potholes.

Still, Hooker said she has taken all the necessary steps.

"I've submitted a claim to the DOT, I've spoken to the attorney general all about the process and how long it's going to take and they've told me that I should know if they've decided to pay out in about two months," Hooker said.

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