Island pothole problem Drivers fear using roads
LARGE potholes on Magnetic Island roads are provi n g s o d a n g e r o u s s o me motorists are fearing for their safety every time they drive.
Bill Flavel, who has been operating taxis on the island for the past three years, said potholes more than half-ametre wide and 38 centimetres deep were costing him thousands in car repairs each year.
Mr Flavel said the damage caused to his taxis by the poor roads meant it was no longer viable to operate his business on the island.
‘‘ My car repairs have gone up 50 per cent ( in three years),’’ he said.
‘‘ Last year I had one repair job that cost me $ 2000.
‘‘ Petrol has always been more expensive on the island and people are cancelling their holidays because council is not keeping up maintenance so it’s not costeffective to run the cabs.’’
The regular road user said while he had noticed council maintenance pick up since Cyclone Yasi, the repair work to the roads was not staying intact.
‘‘ As soon as they fix a pothole a car will drive over it and the pothole will come back,’’ he said.
‘‘ I don’t know whether they are not using the right material or they are not mixing it properly.’’
Mr Flavel said rocks had also f allen within centimetres of his maxi taxi recently because council had not kept up maintenance on the island since the cyclone.
He said he was concerned for the safety of his drivers.
‘‘ No-one has been injured so far but I’m worried it will happen,’’ he said.
Tourism Operators and Businesses Magnetic Island c hai r woman Dr Li ndsay Simpson agreed the situation was dire and that potholes were not the only problem with the island’s roads.
‘‘ The main road through Nelly Bay, Mandalay Avenue, has no guttering so when it rains there is no run off or drainage,’’ she said.
‘‘ In Sooney St, opposite the school, there is oil across the road so when it gets wet it is really slippery. ‘‘ There is also no lighting.’’ Council Infrastructure Services director Neil Allen said council crews were working o n t h e i s l a n d b u t w e t weather had prevented road repairs being completed.
‘‘ At this stage the repairs are temporary until conditions dry out and more permanent work can be carried out,’’ he said.