An angry driver has hit out at Highland Council’s roads team after his Mercedes car was one of as many as two dozen to strike a pothole the “size of a bath tub” on a Highland road.
Colin Mackay said the hole near Muir of Ord was 8-10ins deep in places and that he saw more than 20 other cars go into it, with half a dozen pulling up in a lay-by due to vehicle damage.
The 75-year-old former lorry driver has been told the repairs – two new wheels, two new tyres and new suspension – to his Mercedes B200 Sport will cost between £1,400 and £1,500.
Mr Mackay, who lives just outside of Muir of Ord, said: “My wife, Lynne, was driving. She thought we had hit a deer at first and the noise was horrendous. It was an almighty crunch. We thought the back of our car was coming out. The pothole was about the size of a bath tub.
“It was such chaos that everyone was phoning emergency lines. I called the police and they said they would notify the council.
“The cars looked like Christmas trees, all with their hazard lights on. I think the pothole had been there for a few days, but the recent rain has exaggerated it.”
Mr Mackay said his car hit the pothole on the A832 Muir of Ord to Tore road at about 6.30pm on Wednesday evening.
The speed limit on the road is 60mph but Mr Mackay said his wife was driving at less than 40mph due to poor road conditions, and that the repercussions could have been “much worse” for anyone going faster.
After the incident, his wife pulled into a lay-by a few hundred yards away and was joined by another 3 cars within 15 minutes.
A police spokesman said they received “multiple calls” about the incident and attended the scene, by which time the council had organised traffic management.
Mr Mackay said his vehicle, which he bought brand new in April, was towed away just before 9pm.
And he said he spoke to a council worker just before leaving the scene who told him he had reported it to the local authority’s roads department at 4.30pm on Wednesday, suggesting that the road surface should have been fixed earlier.
A council spokeswoman was unable to respond on the matter.
One woman, Shirley Farguhar, wrote on a social media roads group that she was one of the drivers forced off the road by a pothole, adding: “Highland Council needs to put their bonus on hold with the amount claims they will be receiving.”