Potholed lane blamed for £3,000 taxi bill

PUBLISHED: 08:25 16 August 2012 | UPDATED: 08:52 16 August 2012

Richard Parkhouse points to the water-damaged road surface in Chapel Knap. Photo by Chris Carson

Richard Parkhouse points to the water-damaged road surface in Chapel Knap. Photo by Chris Carson

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Colyton highway branded worst maintained in Devon by damaged Honda owner

A taxi driver has branded a lane near Colyton the worst kept highway in Devon after forking out £3,000 on car repairs.

Angry Tony Moore claims his Honda cab has been literally shaken to pieces driving through the potholes in Chapel Knap.

He has accused Devon County Council of failing to properly maintain the lane which runs between Colyton and Umborne.

But he says the highways authority has refused to pay for the alleged damage to his car – denying responsibility - and he can’t afford the legal fees to pursue his claim.

Mr Moore, of Colyford, says the problem is caused by water escaping from a blocked culvert and running across the highway. It causes deep holes and becomes an icy hazard in winter.

Instead of doing a full resurfacing job he says the highways authority simply goes along every so often and fills in the potholes with tarmac. Often these repairs last only a few days.

The resulting potholes, he claims, have caused three broken wheels on his taxi, five wrecked tyres, a broken £200 engine sensor and smashed bumper and under covers – a total bill of around £3,000.

He told The Herald: “They did pay me around £1,000 compensation around three years ago after I first claimed for damage to the car but now they don’t want to know – I think they have run out of money.

“They are supposed to go and check the road every six weeks but if they do all I can say is they obviously have no sense or feelings. Driving along that lane rattles your teeth out.

I pay £440 a year in road tax and this lane should be done up.”

Mr Moore’s son Dominic said the blocked culvert alongside the lane meant water was running across the surface 24 hours a day.

It was reported to south west water about three years ago but they denied responsibility and all the county council do is come along and fill in ht potholes every now and again. If they resurfaced the lane properly there would be no problem. They filled in the holes again about three weeks ago and it is coming out already.

Richard Parkhouse who regularly who regularly travels along the lane said: “It is shocking –I have been here for over six years and it has always been the same. Work needs to be done.”

A Devon County Council spokesman would only comment: “Safety defects are being repaired.”

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