Hilton’s ‘sign-hanging gang’ steps up war against potholes

2013-04-08 00:00

WITTY signs are springing up around Hilton in a resident’s campaign to rid her town of potholes.

A month ago, Shannon “The Radiator Revenger” Rushworth began her creative campaign against pitted roads which have shredded her car’s tyre and ripped off its radiator.

“[The idea] started when someone put a tiny ‘open for fishing’ sign on a Bergview Road pothole. The hole was filled in three days,” said Rushworth. “The problem is that they just fixed the signposted hole. The rest of the road remains covered in potholes.”

Inspired by the small success, Rushworth erected another sign. “I put one up in Bergview Road saying ‘Bergview dam relocated to Rus Oord’. The Rus Oord pothole was filled within a week.”

“If you give the municipality small projects, they get things done. But this isn’t a small project. [The potholes] are everywhere in Hilton,”said Rushworth.

“They need to know the scope of the problem.”

Recently she launched her ilovemypothole@gmail account, where Hilton residents can e-mail pictures of potholes in their area.

“We have had 100 e-mails already, and the account’s only two days old,” she said in an interview last week.

From the e-mailed images, Rushworth intends to compile a dossier for the uMngeni Municipality.

“My campaign has really caught on,” she says.

Local students have joined in, launching a Twitter handle for ilovemypothole. Rushworth’s friends too, are aiding the cause, putting up more creative signage.

“We are like a sign-hanging gang,” said Rushworth, adding that their most recent “Welcome to Hilton — An adventure around every corner” sign, has been up for over a week, with people adding to it incrementally.

uMngeni municipal manager Dr Mpilo Ngubane was surprised when contacted for comment. “Is it [the sign] there again? Are there more [signs]?”

“We have, in fact, recently fixed potholes all over Howick,” said Ngubane. “In Hilton, I wonder where the potholes are. There could be new ones — I know there has been rain recently.”

Ngubane said he wished residents would contact him directly. “If they e-mail me [at manager@umngeni.gov.za], I send someone to assess the hole and if need be, to fix it.”

He said he would send a team supervisor to assess the roads in Hilton.

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