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Pensioner’s pothole pain

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By Fiona Reid
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Pensioner's pothole pain

AN 80-year-old Moffat woman was forced to crawl through the street to her home after tripping over a pothole.

Marlene Forrest fell in a hole in the road in Dickson Street earlier this month, leaving her body and face badly bruised and shaking her confidence.

Speaking about her ordeal, she said: “I was walking home on a Sunday night from St John’s Church and it was raining and quite dark when I tripped over a pothole.

“I smacked my face very hard on the road and the pain I felt was instant, before long I was soaked with blood that just kept coming.”

In the dark and alone Mrs Forrest had no option but to crawl her way to her front door.

She said: “I had to crawl across the road but luckily a neighbour, who’s a medic, found me, helped me and phoned an ambulance.”

Mrs Forrest spent the night in hospital and was treated for her injuries, which included severe bruising.

However, her ordeal did not end there and the pensioner revealed that the incident has shook her confidence.

She said: “I am feart to go out at night now in case it happens again.

“I am only just able to sleep in my own bed again too. The pain was so bad that for two weeks I was sleeping upright in my chair.”

She hopes her ordeal will spur the council into fixing roads in Moffat and the region a priority.

The news of her fall has sparked outrage locally, especially as Moffat Community Council recently made tackling the town’s potholes their number one priority.

Chairman Bob Opray said he was ‘disgusted’ to hear of Marlene’s fall.

He said: “It horrifies me that the roads are in that bad a state in Moffat that this is possible.

“What makes it worse is that this is not an isolated incident either. Over the past few days I have been hearing of more and more stories with similar outcomes for pensioners.”

And Annandale North Councillor Stephen Thompson has assured that he and his fellow ward councillors are pushing for prompt and prop repairs to carried out on some of Moffat’s worst roads.

He said: “Regardless of budget pressures, safety should be always be paramount and the council must be as cost-effective as possible with re-surfacing programmes and proper, permanent patching repairs.”

Dumfriesshire MP David Mundell has also added his voice to the growing anger over the state of the roads in Moffat.

Mr Mundell said: “This shocking incident should highlight once and for all to the council that serious action must be taken to repair the roads in Moffat and across Dumfries and Galloway.

“Potholes are a continuing source of misery for not only drivers but also pedestrians and I am frustrated that much needed repair works are clearly not being carried out.”

He added: “The council urgently need to come up with a coherent strategy to deal with the pothole problem affecting Moffat and the region in both the short, medium and long-term whilst also producing a clear list of a programme of works so that people can expect to know when works will be carried out.

“The state of our roads cannot be allowed to deteriorate any further and incidents causing serious injuries should shame roads officials into action.”

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