Thursday, April 18, 2024

Potholes costing drivers


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Potholes are bothersome, and at the same time can be rather costly.

Motorist Damien Catlyn knows that very well. He is faced with a $3 000 repair bill for his vehicle after it landed in a large pothole in Wildey, St Michael.

Catlyn is worried that the Ministry of Transport and Works (MTW) may not refund the full cost of the repairs.

He told the DAILY NATION yesterday, he was travelling from a staff party on Saturday night when his car went into the pothole, resulting in a burst tyre and cracked rim.

As he assessed the damage, the driver said a security guard from a nearby business informed him he had been the sixth driver that night whose car got a flat tyre caused by the pothole.

“When I looked around, I saw this other guy around the corner who had his hazard lights on and two other cars had on their hazard lights on that side, trying to change their tyres,” Catlyn said.

“I said ‘This is madness. This pothole blew all of these tyres?’” Catlyn said he asked.

He said that while he was at the scene, another car dropped into the same pothole and the engine cut out.

Believing the pothole to be a hazard, he called the police, he said, but there was no response while he was there, so he left and returned to Wildey the following day and filmed the area. That video has now gone viral.

When a NATION team visited the area yesterday morning, the pothole was still visible and causing vehicles to swerve into the oncoming traffic.

Catlyn said he now had to pay $400 for a new tyre and $190 to repair his rim, if it could be fixed. However, if it cannot be fixed, Catlyn said he would have to buy four new rims, taking his cost close to $3 000.

He said he called a friend at MTW to enquire about compensation for damage caused by the pothole and was told the MTW could only compensate him for the cost of one tyre and rim.

“I said this is nonsense because the rim that got damaged may cost four,” Catlyn said.

“It’s a further expense for me because I have to pay $900 a year and if I don’t pay my road tax and the police stop me, I’d find myself in hot water,” Catlyn added.

When contacted, MTW Deputy Chief Technical Officer Phillip Tudor said anyone whose vehicle was damaged as a result of a pothole could submit details of the incident and copies of any associated bills to the chief technical officer.

Concerning the offending pothole at Wildey, Tudor said a team from the ministry was sent to fix it yesterday. (AD)


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