Motorists outraged over ‘shoddy work’ on PMB roads

2016-05-19 10:42
Motorists have complained that poor workman-ship is damaging their vehicles on Plymouth and Bernard roads.

Motorists have complained that poor workman-ship is damaging their vehicles on Plymouth and Bernard roads. (Ian Carbutt, The Witness)

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Pietermaritzburg - The poor road surface on some roads in Allandale has outraged motorists and residents who claim sub-standard workmanship is damaging their vehicles.

Motorists travelling on Bernard and Plymouth roads said stones from the tar are lifting off the road and damaging their tyres and the vehicles travelling behind them.

Minnesh Parmanand of the Msunduzi Rates Forum (MRF) said similar material was used in Helston Road in Allandale but the material has since “washed away”.

“This seems to be a waste of ratepayers’ money as this exercise did not work on Helston Road. It is now causing more damage than anything else,” Parmanand said.

But the Msunduzi Municipality said motorists drive over the road before it is sealed, which results in grit flying from the roads.

Parmanand wrote to the municipality questioning what specification was used for the road surfacing and if the municipality inspected Helston Road after the job was done.

“The same material used in Helston Road is being used on these roads now and obviously it is not working,” he said.

Ward councillor for the area Jay Singh said he inspected the roads yesterday and found the tar had broken.

“This is poor workmanship and it is causing the tar and stones to become loose. If a driver tries to slow down on the road, the vehicle skids.

“It is a real mess there and drivers must be careful when driving in that area,” said Singh.

Msunduzi municipal acting spokesperson Nqobile Madonda said it was normal to have some loss of grit when applying a “slurry seal”.

The slurry seal that is applied at the end of the process requires about four hours without traffic after being applied to set sufficiently to bind the grit that forms part of the seal.

“We have had a number of instances where traffic has travelled over sections of the slurry seal before it has had time to set properly,” she said.

Madonda explained that when motorists drive over the road before the slurry has adequately set, the car tyres can pick up and flick bitumen and grit onto other cars, so it is important to close the lane to traffic.

“The traffic volumes on Plymouth, Bernard and Helston Roads are higher than on some of the other roads and as a result it has been more difficult to keep the traffic off the slurry for long enough for the slurry to set,” Madonda said, adding that the city would reseal the roads and close the lane to traffic.

She said road users must exercise patience whilst those operations are under way.

“Motorists need to obey the traffic signage and to travel on the side of the road that is indicated by the contractor. These delays are necessary to enable us to preserve the roads and reduce the development of further pot holes to the benefit of the community and road users,” she said.

• kailene.pillay@witness.co.za

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  damage  |  roads

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