Sunday, February 01, 2009

Okay so I am angry anyway

but really this just takes the cake!

Neighbour has been moaning to anyone that listens for ages that the front of his section floods when it rains. A cursory sort of inspection indicates why this is - poor site leveling without any consideration for drainage when they built the house. Further helped by complete lack of maintenance on the ditch outside the property (have seen other neighbours dumping grass clippings in it - don't understand why it doesn't work) He got a quote to get the property properly drained a while ago - $3000.

So when your household income is over 100K a year and you have the option of paying $3K to fix the problem once and for all by a professional what do you do? Not that of course - far too expensive. Instead you ring up and berate the local council about the water coming off the road. Frequently.

After frequent berating the local council gets bored obviously and sends a roading crew out.

Now we've had our road drainage amended in the last year or so, it was done by an engineer who spent several days marking out the bits that needed sorting - he was out there with levels and surveying gear and all sorts of stuff, and he also stood out in the pouring rain (in some nice yellow wet weather gear) one day to see where the water was going and where it wanted to go.
All in all he did a nice job and the water goes away in a logical manner.

That guy wasn't consulted this time.

So we arrive home (both early by coincidence) on Friday to find there is a 200 mm step from the road to our driveway as someone has put a ditch down the side of the road. Husbands work van bottoms out on it, my car takes two careful serpentines to get over it. We get out and 'admire' the day's alteration. It is blatantly obvious that the ditch has been put in to stop the neighbours flooding just by where it begins and ends. The trouble is it hasn't even begun to address the real issue which isn't off the road and what it has done is completely stuffed our access.

So the phone calls begin. Eventually they lead to a character called Roy. "Oh yes" says Roy "I was expecting you to ring - I knew you wouldn't be happy with that" Uhh-huh - that's nice that Roy can see that the job is a little below average "Are you going to fix it then Roy?" "No - your neighbour said it was fine and it is staying like that. If you don't like it you will have to put in a culvert at your own expense" Roy is politely told he hasn't heard the last of it, goodbye...

After several different people a little senior to Roy in the scheme of things have had messages left and a couple more promise to get onto it first thing Monday we regroup over a rum and coke. We move into neighbours from hell mode and tell the neighbour politely but firmly that we will be falling out over this if it continues and we expect he applies as much persistance to having our driveway fixed as he did to the stormwater problem. He reviews the job he thought was just lovely and agrees it probably isn't that good after all.

Some people obviously got onto Roy on Monday as he apparently came out and had a little look and reconsider. Anyway he rang bright and early Tuesday morning and said the access wasn't suitable for a modern car after all and they would be fixing it straight away. He repeated that we would be paying for a culvert if it was necessary though. I explained that if that was the fact we would be seeing his company in the Disputes Tribunal with photos of the general incompetence of their work which I would also be sending to the Council who after all paid for this.

So a few hours later this guy is knocking on my door - "we've fixed your driveway" I go down to have a look. It is a little improved but still not wonderful. I tell him that. He tells me he can't do anything else, he tells me it is the fault of the guys who sealed the road. I explain that it used to work just fine so I can't see how it is the fault of the road - it was all completely functional until they started. He says he won't fill it in again so that is that and goes away.

Roy won't return our calls. Might be time to start writing letters...

1 comment:

Lindsay Mitchell said...

How awful. How utterly infuriating. Time for utu.