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Revealed: Cyclists' injury claims after pothole accidents in Kingston
Seven cyclists have demanded compensation from Kingston Council after suffering injuries they believe were sustained on pothole-damaged roads – but only one has been successful.
The authority doled out £700 in damages to a cyclist injured in an accident in Grafton Road, New Malden, on October 4 last year.
Between 2012 and April 2014 six other cyclist have come forward with injury claims but ended up empty-handed.
The figures were revealed through a freedom of information request by the Surrey Comet asking about damage claims from cyclists between January 2012 and April 25, 2014.
Jon Fray, from Kingston Cycling Campaign, said: “I am sure everybody riding a bike would not want to claim money but that the incident did not happen.
“But it is fair that if people are injured or have their bikes damaged they should claim.
“I’m surprised there has not been many more claims because there’s scores of potholes in the roads.”
Kingston’s Brag Residents’ Association which covers Burton Road, Richmond Park Road and Gibbon Road has dedicated a whole web page to a gallery of rogue and dangerous potholes in north Kingston.
Glen Keywood, from Brag, said: “Potholes are so dangerous for cyclists.
"It is important to resurface the roads for safety. They have recently resurfaced Acre, Gibbon and Elm Road. They are starting to deal with it.
“But Richmond Park Road is another matter. It is still a problem.”
Five cyclists have also asked Kingston Council for money relating to claims for damage to their bicycles since April 2011.
One claimant received £175 following an accident in Moor Lane in Chessington last year.
But John O’Connell, 50, is still waiting on a claim for £220 after coming off his bicycle in Langley Road, Surbiton when his bike hit a deep water-filled pothole on February 17.
The pothole in Langley Road on the day of Mr O'Connell's accident
Although he was not injured his bike suffered considerable damage.
He said: “It is a rather complicated process and takes a lot of time to find out how exactly to claim.
"I had to contact six or seven people at Kingston Council before I found the right person. I think there is a disincentive there.
“You don’t know how many people started the process and then gave up.”
Kingston Council's new Conservative administration has pledged to take £1m from the authority's traffic and parking fines account and reinvest it into to repairing roads, pavements and potholes in its first year in power.
The highest injury payout received by a cyclist is Alan Curtis, who was given almost £70,000 by Hertfordshire County Council after suffering brain damage following a pothole accident in Rickmansworth.
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