any day today rss twitter

Bonkers Blog July 2010

Index: 20092010201120122013201420152016201720182019

13 July - Another Bexley council fiasco - click any image for photo gallery (6 images)

Pedestrian refuge Wet concrete Man at riskI had planned to feature a first birthday event for the unlit pedestrian refuge in Abbey Road but it seems the council has beaten me to it by five weeks. This morning was marred by the sound of a nearby pneumatic drill and when I found time to take a look just before 2p.m. I found the road dug up and a plastic conduit installed. Unfortunately the hole and been filled in with wet concrete and the traffic allowed to run through it. No workmen were in attendance and every passing vehicle sent a resounding thump through the ground.

Seeing me with a camera the nearest resident rushed out and told me he had phoned the council four times about the thump shaking his foundations and been given the run-around. Apparently no one knew of any work going on in Abbey Road. The resident told me his lunch time glass of beer had jumped off his table when a bus went by and it, the beer that is, went all over his carpet. I can well believe it, even small cars were making quite a thud. While we were talking a council man turned up and said he had come to investigate and he hoped the problem would be fixed before the day was done. It would have made more sense if he had supervised the earlier work and ensured it was properly done.

He was evasive when asked why it had taken best part of a year to address this safety problem but claimed it hadn’t been forgotten. If it wasn’t forgotten doesn’t that make the council’s failure willful and therefore a worse bit of negligence?

By 5p.m. nothing had happened but by six a Conway lorry and a single man showed up. To attempt to repair the road with no protection would be foolhardy and I watched from a distance as he made a phone call. Immediately afterwards he backed his lorry alongside the refuge and blocked the road. No traffic warning signs were put out and the rush hour traffic had to directly face that coming in the opposite direction. I don’t blame the man, he had been sent out totally unequipped to tackle the job and chose to take his life in his hands to try to stop the thumps rather than go home as he might have been justified in doing, leaving nearby residents with little chance of any sleep.

By 7p.m. a temporary resurfacing had been completed and Conway had gone. Totally unprofessional it might look but it was surprisingly effective at suppressing the thuds. Will it still be intact in the morning?

The unlit refuge was previously reported on 17 February and 28 January and last year on 18 December and 1 December.


Return to the top of this page