East Bay Pothole Police

Members of Oakland’s East Bay Bicycle Coalition help the City’s Public Works Agency locate potholes and road hazards, dramatically improving repair turnarounds and efficiency. From a recent article in the East Bay Express:

In a city notorious for slow decision-making and budget constraints on services, Oakland’s Public Works Agency is decidedly efficient when it comes to pothole repair —thanks in part to the vigilant eyes of local bicyclists. Through a fifteen-year-old campaign managed by the East Bay Bicycle Coalition, as well as via a city hotline, bicyclists can report potholes, debris, and other hazards that often shoot straight to the top of street and sidewalk workers’ to-do lists.

The EBBC collects road data via a form on their website and forwards the information to the appropriate agencies.

With thousands of paying members throughout the East Bay, the Bicycle Coalition is a sturdy organization, and its hazard elimination program a well-oiled machine. Members and guests alike are encouraged to report problems directly through its web site, including ruts and potholes, dangerous drop-offs, trash and debris, improper signage, and precarious railroad crossings. Some of the more diligent members report every week or two, while others submit only once a year. All told, the East Bay Bicycle Coalition pursues a couple hundred potholes and other hazards in both counties every year.

Pretty cool!

Read the article in the East Bay Express
East Bay Bicycle Coalition

2 Responses to “East Bay Pothole Police”

  • Molnar says:

    I wish something similar would happen in my relatively affluent Boston exurb. Even before the recent economic turndown, I would vary my route from year to year when riding my racing bikes (my favorite is an early 70’s Harry Quinn criterium bike, and I still use tubular tires, but I missed my chance at the favorite bike thread, so enough of that story) because some roads were always in a pretty sad state of repair. But, these days, even after what passes for repairs, the potholes and broken pavement can be a problem even for my ANT Boston Roadster, never mind a racing bike. I can dodge road hazards and I can dodge cars, but both at the same time is tricky. The local authorities apparently don’t think bikes count, so anything a car can navigate is good enough for them. I suppose the thing to do is get involved in local government to fight for incremental improvements, but I have little enough spare time, and it would be a decidedly uphill battle, given the mentality of most of these people.

  • terry says:

    Dunno how things work in your neck of the woods but if a hazard is reported here in Western Australia, then the local authority is liable if nothing is done about it.

    We have what is known as ‘Duty of care’ legislation which extends to all areas of our society from the home, work place and public areas.

    Local authorities defy this legislation at their peril

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