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Driving chaos as monster pothole opens up in road
6:00am Monday 23rd December 2013 in News
A POTHOLE resembling a trench caused thousands of pounds’ damage to cars.
The 12ft long crater, in Mersea Road, Colchester, resulted in police being called in and part of the busy street being closed for emergency repairs.
Motorists who drove through the pothole were forced to veer off the road.
Several reported their wheels had buckled.
David Smith was called to the scene by his son, whose car was badly damaged by the hole.
As a safety precaution, Mr Smith parked his car transporter across the road, blocking it in both directions, near Haye Lane.
When police later arrived, they immediately closed part of the road and called Essex County Council Highways’ engineers to make emergency repairs.
Mr Smith, 54, of Speedwell Road, Colchester, who works in the car industry, said: “In all my years in the trade, I have never seen damage like it.
“I would say over that short time I was there, you’re definitely looking at thousands of pounds of damage, just from one pothole. Nobody could believe it.
“It was just lucky no motorcyclists were going over it. If there had been, I’m sure they would have been dead.”
He added: “Everyone who had pulled in was in the same boat, their wheels had buckled.”
Mr Smith’s son, Wesley, 17, was doing 50mph along the 60mph stretch when his front right wheel hit the hole at around 5.30pm on Wednesday.
He said: “I heard this massive bang and I was worried I had hit a dog, so pulled over and there were already a few cars there.
“When I got out, I asked the other drivers what had happened.
They said they had hit this pothole and their cars weren’t driving correctly.
“I looked down and mine was just the same. The wheel had buckled.”
The car’s damage is being assessed today at Wheelworx, in Greenstead Road, Colchester.
He added: “I will definitely be sending my bill to the county council. This is money I don’t have, especially at this time of year.” The road was not reopened until after 7pm.
An EssexHighways spokesperson said: “Engineers attended the area on the Mersea-bound carriageway following a call from police, who closed one lane for the safety of users.
“An emergency temporary repair was carried out. Being a priority one road, a permanent repair will be carried out within five days.’’
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