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Has anybody taken their local council to court?


Kittygalore
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Hi there

My local council - Surrey County Council - are refusing to settle £418 of wheel replacements which I have had to incur because of a large and dangerous pot hole on the road which I live on.

I have received a letter this morning with them still refusing to pay my money back after I sent my initial letter in February.

Having to replace 2 alloy wheels because of the damage IS surely their responsibility and I am absolutely fuming.

The fact that they repaired the pot hole immediately indicates that it must have been bad enough for them to think it was a problem.

I will get my money back from them, I was just wondering if anyone else had been through a similar thing and if anyone could offer any advice?

Many thanks

Kitty

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Oh how annoying ... the simple facts are that it was impossible to avoid the pot hole and it damaged two alloy wheels and it is down to them to maintain the roads and they haven't, the rest of the road is totally undriveable as well, it is totally ridiculous, when do they admit responsibility then? I am so angry, I am £418 out of pocket, wish I could upload the pictures to show you how huge it was, it stretched across the whole of the road practically.

I live in Cranleigh in Surrey so a bit away from Birmingham.

Thanks Blacksheep - they have been notified about the poor condition of the road, by me, on several ocassions....I think there should be similar forum set up - like there is for reclaiming bank charges, with template letters etc which the council will take seriously!

SCC SUCKS!

Many thanks anyway guys x

Kitty

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Guest express
they have been notified about the poor condition of the road, by me, on several ocassions

 

Did you notify them about the condition of the road before you damaged your vehicle?

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my word, excactly the same happened to me!

 

you don't live in moseley, birmingham per chance?

 

Just reading this thread and I used to live in Moseley in Brum til a few years ago, went to Moseley school too! lol

 

The the OP we have a section of road that is constantly being filled in with tarmac every few months instead of being dug up and filled properly, you know when it needs replacing as there is a 3 metre wide crater in the road:eek: Council don't seem to think it's their problem tho!!

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Hi

I rang up on the 15 February, the day after I damaged the 2nd wheel cos I was just so cross that I did both wheels within a week of each other. I thought enough was enough. The problem I have is if I was driving down that road for the first time, not knowing it was there, how would I have known to complain about it before hand?

However, i have my history documents which they have sent me and it states as follows:

15 February - Enquiry logged ins leaflet sent

16 February - Enwuiry logged by an officer

6 March - Caller rang again to say that pothole is getting worse, spreading in size

9 March - Officer logged

9 March - Caller rang again to say that the pothole is getting worse and spreading in size

They have also sent me Defect Details of that road detailing all the other complaints about the road in general.

They seem to be proud of the fact that the road was last inspected in May 2006 !

Getting more angry by the minute :D

Kitty x

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I would most certainly send them a Letter Before Action; especially if there have been other complaints about the state of the road. If they don't respond positively to that I would take them to court; HOWEVER you will need to find some Law to back up your case; whether it be Statute making clear their responsibilities to maintain roads in a safe and useable condition, or precedents in Common Law where people have won cases which prove, or help to prove, your point.

 

This may be DIFFICULT to win from a Law point of view - but all it needs is plenty of prior research. Remember you have six years to claim from the date the damage occurred.

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Hey cool, thanks for the advice Tom, really appreciate that.

I shall certainly keep on with this one, I have had enough of paying extortionate rates of council tax and then having to pay out more money because they are not maintaining the roads properly with the money they do get from me.

Grimacing!

Kitty x

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.... Oh and to add salt in to the wounds, the woman who was head of business operations for SCC decided to give me a piece of advice to avoid any future damage happening to my car

"Well if you know that the road is causing damage to your car, I would suggest avoiding it"

Very useful, considering I live on the road !

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Guest express

You say that you live in the said road, therefore one would imagine that you were aware of the poorly maintained condition of the road prior to damaging your vehicle. If this is the case did you complain prior to damaging your vehicle? If not why not?

 

The problem that I see, is that as you live in the said road, you would therefore be aware of the condition of the road. It would then not be unreasonable to expect you to drive with extra care and at such a speed that would not cause damage to your vehicle. Whilst I sympathise with your predicament, I can't see how you could possibly win an action in court if the above is correct. My suggestion would be to fire a strongly worded letter off to the Chief Executive of SCC threatening legal action, this will prompt them to pass the case over to their insurer's, if this hasn't already been done that is. Good luck.

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Thanks Express

I appreciate your points and helps to clarify their way of thinking... the trouble is the pot hole is on a single track road, stretching over half of it so it was unavoidable, especially in the dark, even driving at slow speeds.

The pot hole was repaired thanks to my complaining, which is great, but I just wonder how many other people using that road for the first time caused damage to their vehicles and are too worried to complain as they will think they wont get anywhere ... I can see their point!

The fact is, in their leaflet, it states that you can complain if you think that SCC have not maintained the road to the a satisfactory level. They haven't so I do not see how they can say to me that it is not their responsbility? who else is responsible for maintaining the roads?

Anyway, thanks for the advice, I have done the said court threatening letter, so will see what happens from there.

Kitty x

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Road maintenance

 

The council is responsible for maintenance and safety as long as the road is a public right of way. A pothole makes a road unsafe.

 

Councils are settling injury claims arising from potholes and speed humps every day.

PUTTING IT IN WRITING & KEEPING COPIES IS A MUST FOR SUCCESS

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