County highways crews have had to carry out emergency pothole repairs to a country lane near Sleaford where numerous cars have been damaged by potholes.
Locals claim the damage has been made worse by drivers including heavy lorries using Moor Lane through Leasingham to avoid roadworks on the A17 Sleaford bypass.
Leasingham Parish Council chairman Jonathan Franks said he knew of at least 20 cars suffering from damaged wheels and tyres from hitting potholes in the last couple of weeks.
He said: “We were getting lorries through here all night, one after another and they were just ripping up the road.
“The road just disintegrated. There were 300-400 large HGVs coming down it every day and it is only a B-road.”
Most of the problems, he said were at night between 5-8pm at peak rush hour when cars would meet a lorry and be forced to the edge of the road and hit an unseen pothole in the dark.
Coun Franks said: “I have never seen the road so bad. We had four cars parked in the farm yard here at the same time one evening. They had limped here and sent for the AA or tyre services.”
He believed that it was people unfamiliar with the road that had the most problems. At the end where Moor Lane joins the A153, he said a lorry had run into a ditch and the wheel ruts left in the verge acted like train tracks for any other drivers straying onto the grass, channelling two or three cars into the ditch “like a magnet”.
Coun Franks said: “I have some sympathy with the council highways. They nominated a specific diversion and the lorries chose not to use it. When Highways realised what was happening they put red warning signs up at the entrances to the village, but they could only be advisory.”
He contacted the county council on Thursday and on Friday a road crew came out and filled in the worst holes and have been back to fill in more, promising to do a full repair in the summer. Since the lane closures have switched to the opposite side of the A17 this week, he said things have improved enormously and traffic volume has subsided.
The local highways manager said: “We’re aware of the issues on Moor Lane, and have been out to deal with the worst potholes.
“The problems seem to be the result of an increase in traffic, possibly caused by people wishing to avoid the works on the A17.
“The cold, wet weather is another factor contributing to the failure of many roads in places. Signs are in place reminding drivers that the routes through the village are not suitable for HGVs, and we would ask drivers of larger vehicles, in particular, to respect that.
“We’ll continue to monitor the road and make repairs when necessary to ensure it remains as safe as possible.”