In a lawsuit filed Friday, April 29th, Emily Allgood alleged that she fell and broke her foot in a pothole on a downtown Portland street, claiming $49,999 in damages against the city. Allgood faults the city of Portland for failing to patch up the pothole, a claim with which many in Portland would likely agree given the condition of many of our city streets, calling for City Hall to take action in repairing the streets and infrastructure.
Allgood, who had driven downtown between Yamhill and Taylor Streets, parked her car, paid at the parking meter, then went to her driver’s side door to manually lock it. As she was walking to her door she fell into a pothole, fracturing her right foot. The pothole was partially obscured from view by her parked car, claims the lawsuit.
Jennie L. Clark, attorney for Allgood, argues that like any business that charges for a service, including parking, the city has an obligation to provide a safe atmosphere for patrons. This includes ensuring streets and surrounding areas are free from potential harm.
“Legally and morally if the city is going to charge you for parking, the city should fill in the potholes in the vicinity of that parking” said Clark, adding “they should be using the revenue from parking money to fix the potholes”.
Although the city declined to comment on the pending litigation, Clark did mention the city tried to settle the claim for $5,000 prior to Clark filing the suit. The offer was declined as it did not cover all of Allgood’s losses, which includes the inability to work for 12 weeks due to injury, amounting to about $11,000 in lost wages. The suit also seeks $1,300 in medical, and $37,700 in noneconomic damages, or “pain and suffering”.