After 3 months of waiting, VDOT finally announced they will be paying drivers, splitting the cost with TME 50/50, for damages up to $2,000. For claims over that amount up to $4,000, TME will be paying the difference.
It’s the first time in their five-year tenure that the company will actually pay out for pothole damages.
But, there’s a catch: VDOT says only drivers who hit potholes between the Claiborne Bridge and the Broad Creek Bridge will be eligible, and only if that damage came between February 7th at 8pm and February 9th at 1 am.
That window only encompasses about 40 drivers, according to VDOT.
For those who meet all that criteria and submitted the proper documentation, claims up to $4,000 will be paid out.
26 claims have been approved for payment so far totaling more than $15,000.
The claim amounts range anywhere from $130 to more than $2800.
VDOT and TME haven’t publicly said who the lucky drivers being paid out are at this time.
Joe Britton, a pothole victim we previously profiled, isn’t eligible because he hit a pothole on a different interstate.
But both David Kennedy and Lynn Cooper who we also profiled, fall under criteria for payment and they say they have not heard a peep yet from TME on if their claims are one of the 40 to be paid.
This claims settlement comes just as TME finished their last day on the job.
Tuesday night at midnight, their 5-year interstate maintenance contract came to an end.
VDOT says they have hired Richmond Traffic Control for incident response and emergency pothole repair, with a contract that could be worth up to $2 million dollars a year depending on their performance.
They are still looking for a company to contract for permanent repairs that TME never performed during their tenure.
In addition, VDOT has hired the Louis Berger Group, paying them $800,000 a year for consultant services and extra staffing to help provide adequate oversight and administration over the 20 new contracts that will be given out to replace TME’s services. The new employees will work along with VDOT’s road monitors—the agency hope this will help prevent another pothole emergency in the future.