Page 990 - Week 03 - Thursday, 30 March 2023

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Ms Martin said she waited 90 business days only to be told her claim was rejected.

Ms Martin waited 90 business days—not even 60—only to be told her claim was rejected. Again, I would make the point that we are not talking 90 days; we are talking 90 business days. That is a very long time to be waiting.

The article says that Ms Martin said:

They pass you through several avenues, you go from making your initial complaint and then they put you through to someone who contacts you, and then they put you through to an assessor and then it goes from the assessor back to the claims team.’

Mrs Kikkert talked about how difficult it is—not just the form but the entire process.

Ms Martin said she was frustrated and confused when she was told her claim was unsuccessful, saying: “I lost a shift at work as a result of the pothole, and I just assumed that with all the evidence provided they would see it for what it was.” The article said:

She was so frustrated she started a Facebook group titled Canberra Potholes, which has become a gathering point for those affected to share their stories.

The ACT government spokesperson said:

… in some cases, if there was no evidence of the pothole prior to the claim, it could be rejected.

The ACT government doesn't take automatic responsibility and liability for those things.

We need to be aware of the pothole, and have we had time to go out and rectify it?

Here we go again, blaming residents for not reporting that pothole. This confuses me completely. What were you supposed to do last year, when you were driving to work, often in the pouring rain, and you hit a pothole that you did not see because of maybe traffic around you and the rain? What were you supposed to do? Were you supposed to get on your phone while you are driving your car in the rain and say, “Hey, I just hit a pothole 50 metres back”? Of course, that is ludicrous. That is dangerous.

By the time you get to work, have a bit of a look at your car and see what the damage is, probably the last thing on your mind by that point is to ring up and lodge a report of that pothole. And, if you do it via Access Canberra, chances are that not much will happen anyway. Again and again we hear people saying they have used the Fix My Street and nothing ever happens. I really just feel that you cannot make residents responsible for not lodging a notice of that particular pothole.

However, I would commend Ms Martin for her group Canberra Potholes. It has been a source of a lot of information and a bit of hilarity, with some of the memes and the jokes people have put up.

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