New Kent residents are raising their voices about roads in disrepair. They say secondary roads in the county are in bad shape, unsafe and need work right now.
Residents say they've complained a long time about potholes, unlevel asphalt and roadside vegetation growing out of control. A longtime politician in the district says VDOT needs to step up to the plate.
Riding the middle of the road is not unusual in New Kent, and while residents know why they do it, they also know the collision risk - and crashing is sometimes impossible to avoid.
"You can't drive on that side of the road," said resident Barry Allen. "The grass is actually grown three-foot out onto the pavement, it's so bad."
Two trucks hit head on Monday night on Holly Forks Road.
"The school buses, oh it's dangerous," said Ercrute Travers. "You got to stop, if you meet anybody."
Resident Mark Owens showed us where a car flipped recently when it hit unlevel pavement. The road drops off into a ditch. 12 roads have the same problems, they say.
"It's crowned so bad, in some places you can hardly pass another car and the bumps are terrible," said Allen.
Nearly 40 upset taxpayers met us with a petition they're circulating to force the state's hand. Many people signed it the first day.
"We've never had good roads," said resident Peggy Carmine. "They've been lousy. You bounce up and down on the road... And we pay taxes."
District 5 supervisor Ray Davis says New Kent was getting $900,000 a year for secondary roads from VDOT - and now?
"Zero. They've cut all the maintenance out for secondary roads," said Davis.
VDOT says road maintenance is fully funded and it takes requests from supervisors each month. It cannot cut brush back any more without landowners' permission and construction funding statewide is down. Money will be available in 2017.
"Fix the highway. Trim the sides of the roads. Clean our ditches out," said Owens.
Residents are also upset about a road that's closed because of a bridge that got damaged back when Hurricane Irene hit. They say the road closure is risking their health and safety.
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