Angels help woman with sidewalk

January 4, 2008 6:31:54 PM PST
A woman in a wheelchair is put in danger after she's forced to cross a road in heavy traffic. It's a problem she's tried to deal with for months.Then the Action 13 Angels went to work.

People drive fast on West Fuqua. It's pretty scary if you're in a wheelchair like Sharon Smith. She has lots of health problems and everyday when Sharon gets off the bus from her doctors visit, she's forced to wheel into the street dodging oncoming cars. Why? To avoid this sinking sewer cover in the middle of the sidewalk!

"If it's raining I get the wheelchair in mud," Smith told us. "When my wheels go over it, I get stuck. You can't go around this way cause you would tip over."

After trying to get help for nearly a year by calling 311 the city's help line, Sharon knew she needed help from an Action 13 Angel.

"It keeps getting worse," Smith said.

After we took a look we called on longtime Angel Wes Johnson from public works. He was appalled with what he saw. And so was Sharon.

"People who can walk as well as we can have a hard time with this and people in wheelchairs have no chance at all," Wes Johnson of The City of Houston Public Works and Engineering Department. "We're going to eliminate that."

"It's very dangerous, and we'll take care of it," said Don Nolins of the same department.

If you need help from 311, we have some tips. Give a detailed description of the problem, a specific address, plus directions to the location if it's hard to find. And most important, be sure you get a tracking number to check the status of your complaint.

For Sharon, the promise of a quick fix from our Angel was real. Bright and early the next day, the city crews went to work under Smith's watchful eyes.

"I'm just so glad they came so fast," she said.

No more dodging the Fuqua speedway for Sharon. It's smooth sailing on the side walk.

The city's 311 help line offers a number of services, even where to recycle your Christmas tree. You can check it out right here and don't forget if you need help from one of our Angels click here.