Village despairs after 10 years waiting for road repairs

For years youngsters cycling to school have fallen off their bikes at potholes like this one on the main road into Khlong Klang village of Renu Nakhon district, Nakhon Phanom. The 5km road is so full of potholes, residents have dubbed it saen loom, or road of 100,000 holes. (Photo by Pattanapong Sripiachai)

NAKHON PHANOM – After 10 years putting up with a bumpy, potholed road local authorities always say they have no money to repair, residents at Khok Klang village in Renu Nakhon district have despaired of any help.

Frustrated beyond all patience, they took their problem to the local media on Thursday.

They said they have had no option but to fill in the holes themselves – temporary repairs at best.

Udom Juangpholngam, 54, of Ban Khok Klang in tambon Renu Tai, said travelling the 5km road from Renu Nakhon district to his village makes life miserable for everyone.

The holes became deeper and larger every year, posing an accident risk for commuters using this route, which was the main road to their community, he said. The holes were 20-30cm deep.

More than 500 households in tambon Renu Tai were affected. Students riding bicycles or motorcycles along the road to school faced difficulties, particularly during the rainy season, Mr Udom said.

They had dubbed the road saen loom – road of 100,000 holes.

Representatives of residents and teachers at Ban Khok Klang School lodged several complaints with the Rural Roads Department’s branch office over the years, only to be told each time there was no money  to repair the road.

With no one to turn to for help, the residents recruited their children to help carry rocks to fill up the holes after returning home from school or during the weekends.

Young people in the community said the potholed road made their life a misery for many years when riding bicycles or motorcycles to school. They had frequent accidents.

They appealed to authorities to look into their plight, and finally allocate some money to repair the road so they could travel safely to school.

Students stamp on a hole to compact the rocks and dirt they used to fill it, at Khlong Klang village of Renu Nakhon district, Nakhon Phanom. Ten years of asking local authorities to repair the potholed 5km road, and always they are told there is no money for the work. (Photo by Pattanapong Sripiachai)

Children help fill in one of the many large holes in the road  to their community in Renue Nakhon district, Nakhon Phanom. (Photo by Pattanapong Sripiachai)

One more hole to fill in. (Photo by Pattanapong Sripiachai)

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