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A Colorado Springs disabled woman calls on neighbors to clear sidewalks

This resident reported a barrier to city after nearly tipping over in traffic
Posted at 10:39 PM, May 04, 2023

COLORADO SPRINGS— An overgrown tree on Fillmore Street caused a woman in a wheelchair to nearly tip into traffic. Bridget Seritt said she tried to go around it, but the driveway was too steep, "it pulled my chair into traffic and I literally almost got killed."

Seritt said she was just inches from oncoming cars.

"And the car that was coming had to stop, thankfully there was no one behind them because if they had been rear-ended, they would've been pushed into me," said Seritt.

Seritt was able to get back on the sidewalk, but said dealing with hazards like this are a daily occurence.

"It's terrifying," said Seritt. "Every time I'm on a sidewalk, I have to watch every inch of everything."

Seritt called this hazard unacceptable and filed her first complaint to the city. You can file a report here.

The Colorado Springs Code Enforcement Department said it gets more than 12,000 reports every year; most being sidewalk hazards.

"It's important to for our residents in our community to know that the city code requires them to keep the sidewalk and curb area clear that's adjacent to their house," said the department's neighborhood services manager Mitch Hammes.

Hammes said this has been a city ordinance for years.

Homeowners are given a notice that says an inspector will be out in ten days. Hammes said usually the homeowner fixes the problem because inspectors show up.

If the hazard isn't fixed, the city will fix it and bill the homeowner. Hammes said it could cost up to $200.

I spoke with the homeowner and he told me he had no idea his tree was causing problems. He said he plans to fix it himself.

"I think it's important to spread awareness because unless you're in this situation, you don't think about it," said Seritt.

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