Motorist plunged into four foot deep pothole – then climbed inside it


A motorist thought “hell had opened up” when his vehicle hit a four foot deep pothole – that was big enough for him to climb inside.

Stunned Grant Parker, 46, was driving down a residential road when part of the concrete suddenly collapsed under the weight of his wheel.

The front portion of his Volvo C30 disappeared into the void and Grant couldn’t believe his eyes when he got out and saw a four foot deep hole had appeared.

Pictures taken by a resident on Granville Terrace in York show the motorist inside the hole with his head and shoulders popping out of the top.

A City of York Council spokesman said the hole was the result of a sewer collapse, which occurs when escaped water washes away the structure of a road until it gives way.

Workers from Yorkshire Water, which is responsible for York’s sewage system, have filled the hole in since it appeared on March 25.

Grant, who works as a landlord, said: “I was driving down the street and all of a sudden the car just sank down and went into a hole.

“It did some damage to the car, and I’m still waiting for the insurance to deal with it.

“There was just a little mark in the road, and as I went over it, the whole car dropped at one side.

“I got out and thought it was unbelievable.

“You could see a tunnel under the road. I thought hell had opened up or something.”

He added: “I actually got in the hole, it went right down and you could see right under the road.

“The hole has been filled in but only recently.

“It was cordoned off for a while because they couldn’t move any cars because the road was unsafe.”

Fortunately Grant was able to reverse out and take the car to a garage for repairs.

He said he’s already spent £200 having work done to his vehicle and is yet to hear whether insurance will cover the costs.

A spokeswoman for City of York Council said the authority’s highways identified the hole as a sewer collapse.

She said: “This is caused by water escaping from somewhere and washing out the structure of the road, over time, until a void is created.

“The road surface will hold up for so long and then the void becomes too large and the tarmac fails.”

She confirmed the road had been repaired, adding that “liability will not be with City of York Council”.

The spokeswoman said an insurance claim had been received but that it would be redirected to officials at Yorkshire Water.

A Yorkshire Water spokesman said: “We carried out sewer repair work on Granville Terrace on April 5 and completed it on April 12.

“We are sorry to hear Mr Parker damaged his vehicle whilst the road surface was damaged and we repaired the road as quickly as possible once we were notified of the issue on April 3.

“In circumstances like this it is the insurance companies who resolve any claims.”


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