Since 2003, the Canadian Automobile Association has conducted its CAA Worst Roads Campaign, inviting drivers to nominate and vote for roads they find dangerous, traffic-filled, or damaged. Burlington Street East in Hamilton topped the 2018 CAA Worst Roads tally for South Central Ontario for the second year in a row. The street has appeared somewhere on the top ten list since 2009 due to its extensive stretches of crumbling asphalt and potholes. The Hamilton street has appeared on the CAA’s top ten list more than any other street in the campaign’s history.
CAA’s government relations specialist Raymond Chan said Hamilton had dedicated more funding to Burlington Street repairs because of its #1 finish in 2017. The council has allocated $30 million in capital improvements, including resurfacing and reconstruction to be completed before 2027.
CAA’s 2018 campaign saw 3,500 roads nominated, the highest number in campaign history. Not only drivers but also cyclists and pedestrians can nominate roads. CAA sponsors the campaign to allow road users to nominate roads in need of repair. Ontario has over 140,000 kilometres of road and over 15,000 bridges and culverts, along with 9 million licensed drivers.
What Qualifies a Road to be One Of Ontario’s Worst Roads?
Before Burlington Street took top worst road honors, Steeles Road West in Toronto appeared on the top ten list for eight years before being repaired in 2010. The city spent at least $15 million resurfacing the road.
Potholes and broken pavement are the top two reasons Ontarians nominate roads for CAA’s worst list. Other top reasons include a lack of infrastructure for cyclists and traffic congestion.
The complete top ten worst roads province-wide for 2018 are:
Burlington Street East (Hamilton)
County Road 49 (Prince Edward County)
Duckworth Street (Barrie)
Avondale Road (Belleville)
Eglinton Avenue West (Toronto)
Drummond Road (Niagara Falls)
Dufferin Street (Toronto)
McLeod Road (Niagara Falls)
Pelham Road (St. Catharines)
Lockhart Road (Innisfil)
How Can Bad Roads Cause Problems For Drivers?
Just one high-speed impact with a pothole can damage a tire and wheel rim. Potholes and broken pavement create stress on your car’s suspension system. If you have any loose suspension components, they can separate. Aluminum rims bend more easily than steel. Tires can be weakened and torn or can blow out.
What Should You Do In Case Your Car Is Damaged on a Bad Road?
Tire companies offer warranties for manufacturer defects, but they don’t cover damage from potholes. CAA offers instructions for filing claims against municipalities and the province of Ontario. Your claim may be eligible for reimbursement if the municipality hasn’t met its standards for inspecting and repairing roads. Take pictures of both the pothole and damaged pavement and your tire or wheel rim. In prior years, Toronto has denied up to 96 percent of pothole-related claims, with the majority denied for lack of evidence or information.
If you have collision insurance, your auto insurance may also provide coverage for damage to your car from potholes or broken pavement allowing for your policy’s deductible.
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