Plea to council to replace car
A great grandmother left high and dry after the Porirua flood on May 5 wants the council to cough up for a new car.
Maureen Clune’s uninsured car was written off after she drove it through a flooded street and she said she held Porirua City Council responsible.
‘‘They didn’t clear the blocked drains, which is why the road flooded.’’
Geoff Marshall, the council roading manager, said a replacement car would not be offered to Clune.
‘‘It’s unfortunate that the resident chose to drive through waisthigh flood waters, causing the damage to the car.
‘‘If insurance is unavailable, the council could not justify using ratepayer funds to replace the car.’’
Clune, 63, said she became trapped in her car after she followed two other vehicles through water in Warspite Ave in Waitangirua.
‘‘I was sitting in filthy water up to my waist.’’
Clunes said she waited in freezing water contaminated by sewage for more than an hour until rescued by council staff.
She said after her car was pulled out of the water, council workers lifted the grates of nearby drains and the water immediately disappeared.
‘‘It was like pulling the plug out of a bathtub.’’
Clune said the blocked drains were the reason her Ford Falcon was destroyed and she wanted the council to give her a car. ‘‘I don’t want a brand new one – just an old bomb. They could give me an old one off their lot.’’
She said she approached the council, but was told the flooding was an act of God, something she did not accept.
Her insurance lapsed after she lost her job and she said without a car her independence had suffered.
She said a hip injury affected her mobility and she didn’t want to use public transport because her daughter died as a result of being hit by a bus in 1997.
‘‘I’ve been dealt some rough blows, I don’t know what I’ve done to deserve it.’’
Marshall said the council had a regular maintenance programme for sump cleaning to ensure water ran away easily.
‘‘This is done at least twice a year in areas susceptible to flooding or where sumps become blocked,’’ he said.
Maureen Clune wants Porirua City Council to replace her uninsured car.