A Kern County Roads Department project that was started last October 3 has now become the cause of dozens of windshield repairs and replacements for locals, as well as acrimonious relations between residents of the area and the county officials. The chip seal roadwork has apparently been performed quite poorly—at least, if the locals are to be the judge—and the result has been a great deal of aggravation for people traveling down the affected roads, which are the Frazier Mountain Park and Cuddy Valley Roads.
A former LA police officer who now resides in the area, Mike Jensen, has been vigilantly collecting and storing away evidence of the county’s sub par roadwork. Jensen was motivated to do this after he himself was bitten by the road bug, which has actually required him to get work for either windshield repair or replacement at least three times. He claims that traveling down the badly done road has incurred well over a grand in repair or replacement work for him, which is why he has been pushing for the county to do something about the situation.
Jensen is not alone: according to reports, well over 100 persons have suffered car damage due to the road, often due to the surface being so loose that other cars end up throwing aloft all manner of gravel and rocks at their vehicles, leading to dents on the body, broken side mirrors, shattered headlamps, and broken auto glass. The people included in the current count have apparently already filed complaints and claims with the county, which has been dilatory in answering many of them. Those it has answered, however, have apparently received refusals for the county to pay for their windshield repair or windshield replacement, with the reasons for the denial being vague.
Residents are understandably concerned, as they have little choice save to travel the road each day. Some residents have even given accounts of having their windshield repaired, only to experience the same damage just a few weeks after, on the exact same stretch of roadway. With the county continuously delaying answers even with the claims piling up, a lot of the locals are getting worked up—and have even discussed filing a class action suit, which would be the second time for Kern County to experience that, given that one already happened in the early 1980s, with remarkably similar circumstances: also for shabby roadwork and also for bits of gravel and other road detritus being thrown up by other cars as a result of poor road construction by the county and its workers. Locals are hoping that the current situation shall be resolved as it was then, with the law siding with the people filing the suit, so that their windshield repair and windshield replacement work can be paid for the county.