Official wants urgent attention to potholes

A road safety advocate is calling on the authorities to urgently repair the increasing number of potholes on the country’s roads, warning that they are safety hazards.

President of the Barbados Road Safety Association (BRSA) Sharmane Roland-Bowen insisted it was time Government got serious about rectifying the situation.

“It is not only a defect in the road; we also see it as a hazard to motorists,” she told Barbados TODAY.

“Not all persons scan the road as they drive, and they come upon these potholes at the last minute and the first instinct is to swerve to avoid landing in these potholes, and by doing that they can cause a collision; they can cause the car travelling behind to run into the back of them or they can swerve and hit someone.

“So we need Government to see the dangers that these potholes do pose and find some treatment for them,” she added.

Roland-Bowen said while the patchwork that was being done was “a good start” – even though acknowledging that a downpour would quickly wash out the filler – there were too potholes were left.

The BRSA head added that because of the large number of potholes on certain back roads, motorists were avoiding them and opting to use the major thoroughfares, putting “a major strain” on the highways.

Roland-Bowen contended that if the minor roads were fixed, then traffic congestion on some of the major roadways would be eased.

“We would like to see areas that have some of the . . . ‘potwells’ – because they are no longer holes, they become wells – identified so that persons know they are coming up; whether they use reflective painting or some sort of identification so that persons will be alerted to the fact that there is a danger there and you need to slow down,” she further suggested.

“We not just want to look at the potholes; we want to look at the congestion. We know what congestion leads to. It leads to stress, it leads to aggressive driving and it can also contribute to road rage and we know what can happen on our roads,” Roland-Bowen added.

She also pointed out that while motorists were required to pay road tax on time, far too often vehicles were being damaged by the potholes and owners had to wait too long for compensation.

“Every year they have to be paying road tax. Some of these vehicles’ [road tax is] $1,600,” Roland-Bowen said, contending that given the hefty sums they paid in road tax, drivers deserved better maintenance of the roadways.

“Where is all this money going? Take some and repair the roads. We need these things to happen. We need better roads, we need safer roads and Government [is the only one] that can do that.”

Although acknowledging that Government had a lot on its plate, Roland-Bowen’s wish for the New Year was for the authorities to include provisions to make the roadways safer and “more traversable for all road users” in their plans.

53 Responses to Official wants urgent attention to potholes

  1. Danny Colombian Clarke
    Danny Colombian Clarke December 20, 2016 at 6:45 am

    I can say this as a person that rode a motorcycle for many years . These holes are even more dangerous for cyclist. Dropping in one of those can easily cause you to loose control and fall . And you don’t have to be doing stunts either . A cool ride to work etc.

    Reply
  2. Steve L. Jemmott
    Steve L. Jemmott December 20, 2016 at 6:46 am

    what is the change in the life span of a road when the spec. of its thickness moves from 3 inches to 1.5 inches or less?. ..The roads are beaten, dried up and now crumbling, so fixing a hole here will result in another right there, because they are dead and needs recharging of the surface !

    Reply
    • Maria Leclair Dasilva
      Maria Leclair Dasilva December 20, 2016 at 2:23 pm

      That’s why it has to be cold milled, it’s the only way to fix a paved road properly. The money they continue to spend filling holes they could have saved by fixing it the right way to in the beginning. Filling holes is way to costly for what it is and is a rip off.

      Reply
  3. Open Concepts
    Open Concepts December 20, 2016 at 7:03 am

    How many of you remember when the government changed in 2008. Road tax double on all vehicles. This is a disgrace as no maintenance was done to roads in Barbados since then, only patch work. Another thing there are roads in Barbados that have first layer since made with material hard and strong. A steam roller use to compressed roads and patches. No problem then. What sort of cheap material are they using today and the method used on resurfacing roads.

    Reply
    • Cherylann Bourne-Hayes
      Cherylann Bourne-Hayes December 20, 2016 at 7:17 am

      I was about to say that they use cheap crap. Seems like they use marl to fill the holes.

      Reply
    • Maria Leclair Dasilva
      Maria Leclair Dasilva December 20, 2016 at 2:45 pm

      Shouldn’t be the materials since they have improved throughout the years, it may be the job was done poorly. This is why when new roads are being built there needs to be a clause in the agreement that states if the job is not done properly it is fixed at the contractors expense. The inspector should know whether the job is done well enough to last. People need to be held accountable for poor work.

      Reply
  4. Hal Austin December 20, 2016 at 7:12 am

    Road repairs should be paid for by motorists and motor insurers. Rise the road tax and fine insurance companies for road traffic accidents..

    Reply
    • Peter December 20, 2016 at 8:37 am

      Hal, you can only be an idiot looking for an argument. Motorists pay over 240% of their vehicle’s value in duty, Plus VAY plus environmental tax. Every year they pay road tax and insurance, and on top of that comes license fees. They have yo pay Insurance every year.. If that is not enough, motorists pay a high cost for gasoline which includes a tax charge. They also have to endure maintenance costs plus VAT and this ranges from servicing, replacement parts and regular wear and tear costs and you Hal want motorists to foot the bill for road repairs? You got to be mad. Especially with these poorly constructed roads which are only fixed just before general elections.

      Reply
  5. Heather Williams
    Heather Williams December 20, 2016 at 7:27 am

    Its about time some one paid attention

    Reply
  6. Rawle Spooner
    Rawle Spooner December 20, 2016 at 7:53 am

    If government not too worried about sewerage leaks and garbage pileups ya all don’t really think potholes gine be a urgent problem anytime soon.

    Reply
  7. Dan Vaughn
    Dan Vaughn December 20, 2016 at 8:07 am

    They r not potholes call dem moonholes

    Reply
  8. Brathwaite-Haynes Joycelyn
    Brathwaite-Haynes Joycelyn December 20, 2016 at 8:12 am

    The powers that be need to visit Cave Hill. They can no longer be called holes, they are craters.

    Reply
    • Peter December 20, 2016 at 8:43 am

      Joycelyn, I heard the Cave Hill residents don’t have to go to the beach, they sea-bathe in those lakes. Some even go fishing. Hey what you quarreling about? You all have lake front properties. Maybe you’ll have to pay higher property taxes.

      Reply
  9. Steve L. Jemmott
    Steve L. Jemmott December 20, 2016 at 8:15 am

    it is getting virtually impossible to avoid them now .Thye are stretching over half of the road, disguised as water puddles , or dotted like land mines waiting to swallow your wheels.

    Reply
  10. Steve L. Jemmott
    Steve L. Jemmott December 20, 2016 at 8:17 am

    since my daughter turned teenager, she has informed me that she has never seen a road surfaced (in 9 years), or a barbergreen machine working , what that tells you..figure it out ?…lol

    Reply
  11. Steve L. Jemmott
    Steve L. Jemmott December 20, 2016 at 8:20 am

    No joke! in the last 42 days I’ ve had (7)seven blow outs, with low profiles there is no patching..Tyres gone!

    Reply
  12. Steve L. Jemmott
    Steve L. Jemmott December 20, 2016 at 8:32 am

    ….this one mashed me up! call this a pothole?

    Reply
    • Steve L. Jemmott
      Steve L. Jemmott December 20, 2016 at 8:32 am

      front left

      Reply
    • Steve L. Jemmott
      Steve L. Jemmott December 20, 2016 at 8:35 am

      back left , one time!

      Reply
    • Steve L. Jemmott
      Steve L. Jemmott December 20, 2016 at 8:38 am

      went to get both fixed ,came back and had a neighbor, same crap!..he was furious…funny, the worker nearby said it was the best part of the road , hes glad i didnt go further down the road,,, lears road adloining the ABC highway opposite the belle

      Reply
    • Andrea Cadogan
      Andrea Cadogan December 20, 2016 at 12:21 pm

      Hmmm… Is it a bird? A plane? NO!! It’s a baby dinosaur.

      Reply
    • Maria Leclair Dasilva
      Maria Leclair Dasilva December 20, 2016 at 2:47 pm

      You need to buy yourself a helicopter or perhaps you can ask Scotty to beam you up…lol

      Reply
  13. Steve L. Jemmott
    Steve L. Jemmott December 20, 2016 at 8:39 am

    This is what we have to put up with! cost me $300, five more before.It will take more than $20 million to fix barbados roads.

    Reply
    • Maria Leclair Dasilva
      Maria Leclair Dasilva December 20, 2016 at 2:37 pm

      If they are hiring a contractor to fill holes it would be way more costly than having city workers do it, hopefully this is not the case.

      Reply
  14. Cecily Jones
    Cecily Jones December 20, 2016 at 8:51 am

    Does anyone really think that the politicians care about the state of the roads or our sewers? Does anyone really think that they feel threatened by a few negative comments on FB or social media? Does anyone really think that they have any respect, regard or care for Bajans? People, realise that nothing is going to change because these ignorant bunch of cretins in power don’t believe themselves to be accountable to Bajans at all…the nation’s leader Freundel never has a word to say to anyone about anything, and that says a lot about the level of respect he has for Bajans in general..as long as people’s anger and dissatisfaction is confined to social media, there is no impetus for government to listen or to act to the voices of the people….

    Reply
    • Indrani Baxter
      Indrani Baxter December 20, 2016 at 9:57 am

      Couldn’t have said it better myself

      Reply
    • Alison Branch
      Alison Branch December 20, 2016 at 11:52 am

      Besides the election, what other measures do you suggest to gain their attention to the people’s plight?

      Reply
    • Cecily Jones
      Cecily Jones December 20, 2016 at 1:33 pm

      Alison Branch, thanks for your response. Democracy is not something exercised every four or five years when the electorate has an opportunity to vote in or out their candidate and/or party of choice, as is the case in Barbados. There are other means through which the people are able to make their voices heard – and I don’t think that social media is the best platform for the exercise of democracy in Barbados. It’s not direct action, and politicians rarely respond to anything else but direct action. Recourse to the law is probably one of the best means of forcing politicians to be accountable,but Bajans have not generally used the law as a tool for forcing governmental accountability. As an example of how the law might be harnessed to effect change, I’m thinking here particularly of the BREXIT situation in the UK, where a woman, Gina Miller, (Guyanese born, not that that matters) went to court to force the UK government to put BREXIT to a vote before parliament. This means that MPs have to take account of the wishes of their constituents. Bajan MPs generally do not represent their constituents, but their own self-interests. There are other means, such as petitions, protests, lobbying, all accepted means of participating in a democracy but none of which are used by Bajans. If we are going to continue with the Westminster model, we should be prepared to adopt some of the models of participant democracy. Barbados has, it seems to me, a representative democracy, but it does not by any stretch of the imagination, function as such.

      Reply
    • Rawle Spooner
      Rawle Spooner December 20, 2016 at 1:59 pm

      Cecily Jones you are so right on point Bajans who live in Barbados just too damm timid and that’s just how both of these two political parties that have ever govern Barbados like it.

      Reply
    • Cecily Jones
      Cecily Jones December 20, 2016 at 2:11 pm

      Rawle Spooner It’s not that Bajans don’t have a voice, but they don’t give voice to their feelings where it matters. Social media has been particularly effective as a weapon of political change in the democratic process in other spaces, but it does not have the same impact in Barbados. Dissent needs to be expressed in spaces outside of social media – outside Government House and other spaces where politicians gather. It has to assume different and more direct forms, public protests, petitions, recourse to the law. Until we as Bajans actively confront our politicians, rather than steupsing from behind a computer screen, change is not going to come. Governments elected by the people for the people should always be enthralled to the people. Our government, by contrast, has no respect for the people or their opinions on any matter.

      Reply
  15. Hal Austin December 20, 2016 at 9:17 am

    Pet er,

    Yes. I am too serious a person just to look for silly arguments. Motorists and motor insurers should foot most, if not all, of the bill for road repairs. There is no free lunch in this town.
    The alternative is a decent public transport system. No way out. Pay or get rid of your cars.

    Reply
  16. Peter December 20, 2016 at 10:30 am

    So Mr. Austin sir, Exactly why are motorists paying all these fees and taxes? and what is it in aid of? Paying ministers? Man You really can’t be serious. I think you are practicing partisan politics.

    Reply
  17. Adriano Sergio
    Adriano Sergio December 20, 2016 at 10:49 am

    A very big problem along the south coast and alot of visitors complaining

    Reply
  18. Ginger December 20, 2016 at 11:00 am

    Try driving up Well Gap. My daughter’s new car felt like an old cane truck while trying to traverse that road

    Reply
  19. Kenrick Purcell
    Kenrick Purcell December 20, 2016 at 11:31 am

    Without proper Drainage Asphaltic Concrete (Asphalt) lifespan is greatly reduced…That coupled with the fact most of our secondary roads were built on a base that is now polluted with soil…..I’ve dug them up several times and replaced the old with new compacted material but it’s an exercise in futility because the surrounding material is mixed. Our infrastructure is in a poor state.

    Reply
  20. Reds Lucombe
    Reds Lucombe December 20, 2016 at 11:52 am

    To tell the truth governments dont care about people period. As long as they getting paid thats it but go to parliament and talk crap that they dont understand themselves what they just said

    Reply
    • Cecily Jones
      Cecily Jones December 20, 2016 at 2:14 pm

      Reds Lucombe..you are so right..if you read half of the statements by politicians to journalists etc, most of what they say is nonsensical and barely literate. They are an embarrassment to our nation. And to think that most of them benefited from the best possible education offered in Barbados and beyond.

      Reply
    • Reds Lucombe
      Reds Lucombe December 20, 2016 at 2:16 pm

      Lolll thanks

      Reply
  21. Reds Lucombe
    Reds Lucombe December 20, 2016 at 11:53 am

    We have to wait lord knows how long the rainy

    Reply
  22. Reds Lucombe
    Reds Lucombe December 20, 2016 at 11:54 am

    Season will come again and then we will be like other islands

    Reply
  23. Reds Lucombe
    Reds Lucombe December 20, 2016 at 11:54 am

    No proper drainage more craters

    Reply
  24. Reds Lucombe
    Reds Lucombe December 20, 2016 at 11:55 am

    Flooding will be worse

    Reply
  25. Reds Lucombe
    Reds Lucombe December 20, 2016 at 11:56 am

    Six o one half dozen d next

    Reply
  26. Wayne P Hoyte
    Wayne P Hoyte December 20, 2016 at 12:02 pm

    The way the POTHOLES are repaired dont hold up to any thing medium or long term. So every 2 rains the hole opens up…. yea WIDER.

    Reply
  27. Dario K Alleyne
    Dario K Alleyne December 20, 2016 at 12:57 pm

    Yall got a bunch of cement in bim fix all the damn roads cart roads in all 166sq miles … make concrete roads and drop the duty on tyres

    Reply
  28. a. zanocchio December 20, 2016 at 12:59 pm

    Sunday ..just after Sandy Lane turn off before the fire station
    giant pot hole…two tyres and two rims…gone……

    BUT on Monday morning somebody filled it with barbergreen and gravel…..

    a disgrace….

    Reply
  29. Andrea Atkins
    Andrea Atkins December 20, 2016 at 4:37 pm

    Has anyone noticed the state of the road when you turn into Henry’s Lane from Collymore Rock. Terrible! And there is always water in that ‘crater’! If you are on foot, you have a hard time negotiating where to step! Just horrible!

    Reply
  30. Marva Straughn
    Marva Straughn December 20, 2016 at 7:31 pm

    Road taxes $400…roads priceless

    Reply
  31. Leroy Parris December 20, 2016 at 9:04 pm

    Hey Hal Austin, I am under the impression you are a foot passenger. If I am correct in thinking so well then why don’t you suggest that the government take a donation from you as a contribution for the upkeep of the byways. It’s very silly of you to suggest that motorists should foot the bill for the road repairs. Surely you are not too familiar with private owned vehicles to know how expensive they are to maintain. Transport are one of the main financial income that any government of a country makes most of their cash from. I, having travelled the length and breadth of the island daily are tired of shunning these so called pot holes. Even tonight I saw a hole in the middle of the road that is nearly the size of a grave. Luckily for me I spotted it in time to ease down and bypass it. All I can say is sooner or later what will happen God for bid is that the road will collapse.

    Reply

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