VIDEO: Pot hole ‘size of a small swim pool’

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A retired traffic patrol officer said he has endured a ‘long and painful process’ with the county council for car damages he claims were caused by a large pot hole.

Storrington resident Jon Dorsett said he and his wife drove into a pot hole on Broomers Hill Lane on January 2, causing more than £2,000 worth of damage to their Polo GTI.

JPCT 130513 Jon Dorsett is in a dispute with the council over not repairing a pot hole that substantially damaged his car. Photo by Derek Martin

JPCT 130513 Jon Dorsett is in a dispute with the council over not repairing a pot hole that substantially damaged his car. Photo by Derek Martin

Mr Dorsett said it was too dark to see the pot hole, which he claimed was the ‘size of a small swimming pool.’

“It destroyed all the components of the front suspension and caused one of the front wheels to recede into the wheel arch,” he told the County Times. “The force of the impact was so strong it stopped my wife’s watch from working.”

Mr Dorsett claimed he saw vehicle debris strewn along the road, including wing mirrors, hub caps and bumpers, belonging to other drivers.

“It didn’t look like I was the only one. When I put my hand in the pot hole it came up to my elbow.”

Mr Dorsett said he had observed over the years the same pot hole undergo numerous repairs.

“I reported it to the county council and the hole was repaired within two hours, but it has since been repaired on three more occasions.”

Hoping to reclaim the costs of his car repairs from the council, Mr Dorsett went through what he called ‘a long and painful process’, which he said was unsuccessful.

In a letter to Mr Dorsett the council explained that via Section 58 of the Highway Act 1980, the proper procedures were taken to repair the pot hole, and there would be no compensation

“I’m probably one of a dozen or maybe more people who have been subjected to this statutory defence,” he added.

“It took them four months to respond. I believe the entire process was designed to put off people from pursuing the case.”

Since the accident, Mr Dorsett has returned to the scene of the accident and said the pot hole has not been sealed properly and therefore could continue to pose a danger.

“As a former police officer I can tell you that it was a dangerous scenario and can happen again.”

On Broomers Hill Lane there is approximately 10 metres of road scarring where pot holes have been previously repaired.

“It’s a bit like a railway track that pulls you into the large pot hole,” he said.

“You can only imagine how much of the tax payers money is spent on re-doing these pot hole repairs.”

In reference to Mr Dorsett’s claim the county council stated: “The county council does not comment on individual compensation claims.”