2 - General Conditions and Requirements for Maintenance Hole Permits

Revised on 06-17-2020


A permit is required any time a Maintenance Hole (MH) cover within the public right-of-way is opened.   The MH Permit grants permission for opening of City of Los Angeles sanitary sewer and storm drain maintenance holes only. Opening of maintenance holes owned by any other agency requires permission from that agency and does not allow applicant to enter said maintenance hole(s).


  • No person shall open or remove the cover of any maintenance hole or allow any maintenance hole to remain open in or upon any street or sidewalk without setting barriers in accordance with the latest edition of the Work Area Traffic Control Handbook.
  • Image of maintenance holeIf a Maintenance Hole is left open, the following requirements must be visible to approaching traffic and maintained at all times:
    • Barriers or Maintenance Hole Guards with at least two red flags devices shall be maintained at all times while the maintenance hole remains open
    • From sunset until sunrise of the following day, at least two warning lights
  • Pursuant to LAMC 62.61 (formerly Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa Executive Directive No. 2 - Rush Hour Construction on City Streets) no person or entity shall effect a "Traffic Lane Closure," perform work within or on any public street or right of way, or in any manner obstruct a public street or right of way on those "Street Classifications Subject to Work Hour Restrictions" during "Peak Traffic Hours," as defined as Monday through Friday, 6:00 am to 9:00 am and 3:30 pm to 7:00 pm unless a Peak Hour Exemption (PHE) is obtained (May 2, 2018 BOE Special Order #02-0418). 

    Peak hour restrictions and exemptions for MH Permits shall follow the Peak Hour Restrictions/Exemptions Guidelines for Development Services permits.

    Street classifications subject to work hour restrictions include:
    • Boulevard I (formerly Major Highway Class I)
    • Boulevard II (formerly Major Highway Class II)
    • Avenue I (formerly Secondary Highway)
    • Avenue II (formerly Secondary Highway)
    • Avenue Ill (formerly Secondary Highway)
    • Collector Street (formerly Collector Street)
    • Industrial Collector Street (formerly Industrial Collector Street)
    • Hillside Collector (formerly Hillside Collector Street)
  • This permit is not valid for work in any street affected by the “Holiday Moratorium” between November 20th and January 2nd of the following year.
  • Any violation of the permittees obligations would be enforced under LAMC 80.06.1.
  • Permit or certification must be on the jobsite at all times


The opening of track switch box covers does not require a permit.


Per LAMC 62.42, in the case of emergency, the manhole cover may be opened to inspect, repair, adjust or renew any cable wire, pipe, valve, instrument or apparatus installed or contained in any such manhole, the cover thereof may be opened or may be removed for a period of time actually necessary for such inspection, repair, adjustment or renewal, during which period of time a watchman or guard shall be kept in constant attendance at the exposed opening of the manhole.

Within 48 hours of the emergency opening of the manhole, the permittee must notify the BOE Central District Office or the owner of the manhole.  At that time, BOE would issue a, “after the fact” Maintenance Hole permit to the permittee.


Physical entry into sewer or storm drain maintenance holes owned by the City of Los Angeles requires permission from the City of Los Angeles, Department of Public Works, Bureau of Sanitation, Wastewater Collection Systems Division at (323) 342-6006.  

All personnel entering maintenance holes should be properly trained and equipped for confined space entry per Cal/OSHA Title 8, Section 5157.

Additional safety requirement for MH Permits shall be follow the Safety Guidelines for Development Services permits.