The Foxboro Reporter reported today that a 62 year old bicycle rider was injured Sunday when he hit a pothole on Route 140 in Foxboro. John Polacek was wearing a helmet and riding properly with traffic when the pothole flipped his bicycle. Polacek landed on his head and suffered serious spinal injuries. He was airlifted to Massachusetts General Hospital.
The pothole had been there for months, according to a resident who lives near it. Crews would occasionally patch it “with a couple of shovels full (of asphalt)” but it would be “bad again in a couple of days.” Even after the injury to Polacek, it took prodding by the Foxboro Reporter to get the pothole repaired. They discovered that it remained untouched and was not marked to warn drivers or riders of its danger a full two days after the incident, so they notified the state highway department. A crew was sent to repair the site that same day. Whether they completed the repair and how long it will last is not known.
We hope Polacek has hired a good attorney or at least gives the state notice of his injury within 30 days of last Sunday under the Massachusetts highway defect statute. As I blogged last week in Short Deadline Precludes Claim for Massachusetts Motorcycle Accident Injuries, meeting this unrealistically short notice requirement is essential to preserving your claim if you are injured by a defect relating to a road or sidewalk.
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