SAN DIEGO (NEWS 8) – A pothole here. A pothole there. The City of San Diego says it has seen a spike in reports of potholes due to recent winter storms.

With cracks and holes popping up at random, it has been tough for drivers to plan their routes around them – even when they try to avoid them.

“I avoided one today that was quite large. It could have damaged the wheel of my car, but was able to see it and drive around it,” one driver told News 8.

The odds, however, are drivers are driving through them which in turn means damaged tires and car bodies.

So, who pays for that damage?

If it meets certain standards, drivers could file a claim with the city. If a driver notices damage to his or her car after he or she hits a pothole in the City of San Diego he or she should immediately document any damage. That includes taking plenty of pictures to have the most accurate claim possible.

All claims must be made in writing, accurately completed, printed, signed by the claimant and mailed or personally presented in hard copy format to:

City of San Diego
Risk Management Department
1200 Third Ave., Suite 1000
San Diego, CA 92101

Drivers must file their claim no later than six months after the date of the incident or event.

Also, it is a good idea for drivers to attach any other relevant information and estimates for repairs. In fact, the City of San Diego said says drivers should, in their written claim, state justification for loss through repair estimates and photographs of the damage.

If there is bodily injury, claims should be accompanied by unaltered copies of bills from treating physician(s) or other expenses incurred from the injury sustained.

Once all the information is gathered, drivers can file a claim the city’s Risk Management Division where it will either be approved or denied.

Risk Management Department, Public Liability Division usually takes about 45 days to process and investigate a claim.

“I am not a litigious type of person. I don’t look at other ways to spend our tax money, but that is something nice to know,” said a driver.

Potholes can be reported on the San Diego City’s Get It Done app.