If you think the traffic all over the city is crawling because of the rain, you are wrong. Gaping potholes on the roads have slowed down vehicles simply because their drivers do not want mechanical breakdowns when they go over the potholes. The city roads have been left with a lot of defects these days with the steady drizzle interspersed with a few heavy showers. The potholes are the biggest nuisance for pedestrians as well as the citizens using vehicles.
Hitting a pothole is really dangerous for a motorcyclist. “It’s extremely difficult to know the depth of potholes during rains while you travel. This can lead to serious casualties,” says Bishal Paul, a student who uses his motorcycle to commute daily.
The PMC every year spends crores of rupees in building the road and later on repairing them, but during monsoons all their efforts go in vain. These water-filled and slushy potholes at Sus goan road are a nightmare. Citizens say that the officials showed no urgency in filling up the craters. Not only Sus gaon, there are other areas such as Karve Road, Viman Nagar and Paud road where a rash of potholes has made the lives of many people miserable.
Pallavi Roy a resident of Viman Nagar complains about the increase in the number of accidents happening due to the bad condition of the roads. “For pedestrians like us it has created a lot of mess t walk in the footpaths as the roads are full of traffic and we reach college almost an hour late”, says Roy.
Pune city has received a very good amount of rainfall this year and with two more months for monsoon to end; the conditions of roads are going to worsen. The civic body does attend to potholes on days when the rain hold sup, but filling them up with bricks and rubble worsens the problem.
Sharat Prakash, an employee of Tata Mahindra feels that the term ‘potholes’ should be swapped with ‘death-holes’. He also adds that these ‘death-holes’ not only makes the driving experience horrible but also provides a difficult time to the pedestrians. “ Some heavy vehicles speed over these potholes sloshing dirty water on people on their way to work, attending job interviews, etc leaving them stranded and helpless,” says Prakash.
There were plans to use a tough terrain road building technology for potholes where cold mix technology will be used since it can be laid even when it is raining but when the PMC officials were contacted, they refused to comment on this.
“The potholes are not only making holes in pockets due to increased repairs but also killers! The traffic chaos due to potholes wastes fuel and only escalates pollution. But who is accounting? asks Hema Royde, the manager of an NGO in Pune.