Municipality failing motorists with poor roads

My name is Tougheeda Jacobs.

I am from Cape Town and am currently having a break in East London. I was just focusing on the surrounding beauty, but could not help noticing the dangerous potholes in the roads.

On Saturday, my friend wanted to show me Gonubie. Firstly we hit a pothole and were unable to swerve out of harms way due to an oncoming vehicle.

Further on we we were unable to see another pothole close to the pavement. We hit this very dangerous pothole and heard this loud bang and were forced to stop. As I thought, it was the exhaust and we jumped out of the car,

A young man also stopped to assist, saying and saw what happened. He went straight to the front left tyre and said the tyre had a hole in it and kindly offered to change the tyre, but we did not have a spare.

He advised us to drive to Gonubie Tyres to check it out. and said please just drive very slow. He also told us he had had a similar experience while riding his bike.

When we got to Gonubie Tyres a young assistant said they could not replace the tyre because the rim was very badly damaged. He advised us to go to Mag-Rite Repairs.

I spoke to the receptionist at Mag-Rite who put me onto a staff member and who in turn referred me to the boss.

I explained that we were two ladies in dire straits and needed help. He was very helpful on the phone and said to me: ”please just drive to me very slowly as we were now driving with a flat tyre”.

We started driving with our hazards on and called them again to say we were on the freeway and the receptionist said: “Oh dear, Mario has left to come look for you. Give me your number and let me call him.”

I was gobsmacked when she said that he was on his way to look for us.

The next thing we see is Mario driving this smart bakkie with his hazards on, showing us to follow him. Can you believe that there are such amazing people on this Earth – as many are stuck in a comfort zone?

I had tears of appreciation for the fact that Mario took time out of his busy schedule to drive out to find us.

We then arrived safely at his repair shop. He invited us in, pulled up two chairs and asked Debbie to make us coffee as we were both shaken after this pothole ordeal.

We sat there for about two hours while Mario and his competent staff fixed the rim and tyre. What a mission this was especially for me being a tourist in East London.

Having said all of the above, the lessons of the story are:

  • Mario a life-saver of note with empathy who has an amiable and debonair persona, and is caring and kind.
  • Also, while we were standing at traffic lights there was a man begging. He only had one leg and Mario put a solid note in his hand.

All the same thanks to his competent staff; and it is absolutely disgusting that parts of East London are so neglected and dangerous for all motorists.  The municipality should be ashamed of themselves for not fixing the roads that once were in a good and safe condition.

I ask myself how the heck hell did this happen?

The damages cost us R500 which was not in the budget and will the municipality refund this? And, clearly, they are responsible for any car that hits a pothole.

I thank you for taking time to read this very important e-mail as many motorists’ lives are at stake.

Tougheeda Jacobs


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