Road Hazards and Who to Contact
Today on my bike ride, I encountered a sign post anchor in the middle of the shoulder / bike lane. I’ve seen these around town many, many times and have often thought “I wonder if anyone ever hit this? It seems like such a safety hazard.” Road hazards can come in all shapes and sizes, from smaller anchor posts like these to large potholes or uncovered manholes.
What do you do when you encounter one on the road while riding? In a solo ride you obviously avoid hitting the object by moving away from it. In a group ride, however, it’s EXTREMELY important to point out these hazards so your fellow riders behind you don’t hit it by mistake. To do this, the people who are in front of the line should point out the hazard and move the riders behind them away from it immediately. They may call out ‘hole’ or ‘pole’… to draw your attention to it, but most importantly POINTING and GESTURING TO MOVE LEFT OR RIGHT OF THE OBJECT, keeping riders away from it with hand gestures is the most obvious and best way to draw attention to the hazard. All riders behind the lead riders should do the same… point out and move the riders behind them away from the hazard. This process repeats for all the riders in the group until the last rider safely passes.
Who do you contact to fix or remove the road hazard? After my ride today I wanted to contact the city or county to make sure they know it’s there and that it’s a hazard to anyone bicycling. The woman who answered the phone and took the information and was happy to put the service request into her system. She understands it could be a hazard and welcomed the call. She informed me that it normally takes about 3-4 business days for it to process, but after that, it should hopefully be resolved.
What information should I have ready to report?
- Description of the hazard – what it is, i.e. pothole, anchor pole in the ground, etc…
- The location / exactly where you encountered the hazard.
- Take a photo of it if you can (optional, but helpful in case they need to see it)
Which Public Works Department do I contact? You have to know where you are in the city, i.e. what jurisdiction you are in. I know from the location, since I live near the area, that it was Clark County. Our city has three public works departments, and then the surrounding areas of Henderson and Boulder City have their own departments. I’ve listed them below along with their phone number for your reference.
- Las Vegas Public Works – Streets and Sanitation Division
- Clark County Public Works – Road Maintenance Division
(702) 455-7540 for potholes, anchor poles in the ground, etc…
(702) 455-6000 for streetlights and traffic signals
- North Las Vegas Public Works – Roadway Division
- Henderson Public Works – Road Maintenance
(702) 267-3000 press option 4 for road maintenance, then press option 6
- Boulder City Public Works – Street Division
I hope everyone will take action when they see a hazard on our streets. It only takes a few minutes of your time and well worth the effort to ensure we all stay safe on the roadways.