NBC 4 New York
A Long Island limo driver is taking pothole patrol to a whole new level: He says he's tired of swerving around them in the streets, so he's filling them himself. Roseanne Colletti reports.
A Long Island man is taking sand, broom and shovel to the annoying and hazardous potholes in his neighborhood.
Bob Fitzgerald, 55, of Levittown, is a limo driver by occupation and a filler of potholes by avocation -- or, as he explains it, by necessity. He says when he reports the street craters, they still don't get fixed.
"I'm just sick and tired of getting song and dances on the telephone," he said.
Fitzgerald told NBC 4 New York he backed his car out of the driveway and into a gaping hole several years ago. He lost his bid to force the Town of Hempstead to pay for the damage to his car and has been on a mission since then.
"If I see one here, I fill it in," he said.
That's not a good idea for Fitzgerald or anyone else, according to the town's spokesman. Michael Deery said sand is a poor substitute for asphalt and can actually make a pothole bigger from water absorption and freezing.
"It's dangerous to stand in the street," Deery added.
Deery provided a list showing the town had addressed Fitzgerald's numerous pothole complaints.
Fitzgerald's neighbors don't seem to mind his pothole vigilantism. Tom Clark, who lives across the street, calls him Senator Pothole and referenced former U.S. Sen. Alfonse D'Amato, known for embracing local issues.
Other town residents said potholes are more numerous than ever.
The town says it responds to complaints in a timely manner.