Weather Forecast


Judge files claim for pothole damage

St. Croix County Circuit Judge Eric J. Lundell has filed a $1,432 claim against the city of Hudson for damage done to a family car when it hit a pothole in Coulee Road last January.

In the written claim filed with the city on Feb. 23, Lundell said his stepson was driving the 2004 Audi when it hit a "very deep" pothole in front of the Associated Bank building on the morning of Jan. 25.

Even though only one tire was damaged beyond repair by the pothole, all four of the car's tires needed to be replaced so they would have the same rolling radius and circumference, the judge said.

The bill for the replacement tires came to $1,272, Lundell reported, and it cost another $159 to repair the car's tie rod ends.

"We are not making any claim for loss of use or inconvenience," Lundell wrote. "We simply want the city or its insurance carrier to pay us $1,432.68, the combined total for the two invoices."

He said the potholes on Coulee Road appeared between Christmas and New Year's Eve of 2010.

"I saw them get larger and larger over the next several weeks. Unfortunately, our Audi hit one of the largest potholes before all of the potholes were repaired," he wrote.

Lundell said the city Public Works Department filled the potholes the day after his stepson hit one of them.

On March 28, the Hudson City Council denied Lundell's claim on the recommendation of the city attorney and the city's insurer.

The city maintains that it didn't have prior knowledge of the pothole that Lundell's car hit.

Earlier in the year, a similar claim was rejected by the City Council.

Other motorists have complained about hitting potholes, but haven't filed claims against the city.

Lundell has six months from the denial of his claim to pursue it in court.

City workers have been seen filling potholes in the past week.

Randy Hanson

Randy Hanson has reported for the Star-Observer since 1997. He came to Hudson after 11 years with the Inter-County Leader at Frederic, and eight years of teaching social studies. He’s a graduate of UW-Eau Claire.

(715) 426-1066