Paver blocks are the problem, not the solution

Yesterday, this paper ran a front-page story on the state of several arterial roads in the city, thanks to paver blocks. Paver blocks, always a bone of contention and controversy, have been used on roads instead of other material like cement . 

Ten troubled spots were identified spanning the city from Juhu-Vile Parle, Andheri and Bandra to central pockets like Dadar and Ghatkopar.

There are craters on several roads, and most of the time, the surface is unruly with paver blocks lying dislodged at junctures on these routes. This makes driving a challenge. Motorists have stated in the report that driving on these paver-block roads have taken a toll on their health too, with at least two persons interviewed complaining of back problems. Sometimes, roads have stayed in this condition for more than five years, with dislodged paver blocks being replaced by more paver blocks, making the whole process of road repair a futile exercise.

It is mystifying why paver blocks, meant for pavements, are being used on road surfaces. Moreover, these are roads that take a battering because of the heavy Mumbai traffic using them, including buses and trucks.

Why is the proper material not being used on roads? Civic authorities cannot use slap dash measures like paver blocks to cover up lapses in road repair. There have been several accidents, with motorists on two wheelers sometimes succumbing to injuries sustained.

Of course, riders too bear the onus of wearing a helmet and exercising caution when they drive; but authorities must ensure smooth surfaces too.
Paver blocks are not the material to be used on these roads. Somebody needs to be accountable for this.  

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