And that has been the case with road works organised by Infrastructure Cook Islands (ICI), in an attempt to fix the worsening pot holes that line the roads in Matavera.
Chief executive at the office of Minister of Agriculture and Matavera MP Kiriau Turepu, Charlie Rani, said the work and maintenance had been put on hold due to wet weather, but continued yesterday.
Rani said six workers from ICI would fill the potholes first and then road grading would begin.
“Our first priority is to fill up all the potholes. The work itself will take around two weeks if there are no further delays.”
When asked what triggered the maintenance work, and why Matavera in particular was having roads repaired he said complaints from the public often resulted in urgent repair work being done.
“The complaints from the public are what have brought our attention to Matavera specifically. Many people have complained about the back road and inland roads within that area, and thanks to timing, costing and convenience, we are able to take action,” Rani said.
However Brent Fisher of the Cook Island Road Safety Council says not enough is being done to address the the state of our roads and road safety in general.
Though it was “helpful” something was being done to try and repair Matavera roads, he claimed the correct procedures for lasting repairs were not being followed.
“The quality just isn’t up to scratch, they (ICI) know how to correctly fix the potholes, they have had people come in and show them exactly what to do – and yet they are still fixing potholes and road damage incorrectly.”
He said the Cook Island Road Safety Council had organised a five-year strategic plan in an effort to address all concerns and issues regarding road safety on Rarotonga.
“We spend a lot of time going through the areas that need looking at with regards to the roads on Rarotonga, such as child restraints, helmet safety, and the widening of the Rarotonga Hospital road. However, the conditions of our roads is definitely a major concern,” Fisher said.
He claimed ICI had been known to wait till someone complained or fell off their motorcycle as a result of running into potholes before taking action. However, often people were not sure who to complain to and their opinions about unsafe roads were left unheard.
The Cook Islands Road Safety Council’ Facebook page now provides a platform for residents voice their concerns and Fisher says he and other members of the council will pass them on to the relevant people.
Concerns about road safety can be directed to Fisher on 55154.