The two national roads in North Cork have been described as “an absolute disgrace”, with the dire surfaces in places causing lorries to jackknife, multiple blow-outs of tyres, and other damage to vehicles.
The situation has become so bad on parts of the N72 and N73 that the council's deputy chief executive, James Fogarty, has called for an urgent meeting between the local authority and Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) to address the issues.
The council has applied for funding from TII
for some upgrade projects on the roads , but has so far been unsuccessful.
Several councillors expressed fears that fatal accidents will occur if sections of the roads are not fixed shortly.
Fianna Fáil councillor Deirdre O'Brien told a meeting of the council's northern division that the “disastrous road surface” on the N73 at Ballyenihan, Kildorrery, had recently caused one truck to spin out of control and jackknife.
“I've had numerous calls from truckers whose vehicles are getting damaged and have had tyres blown out. There will be a fatal accident there if something isn't done about it soon,” Ms O'Brien said.
She said the N73 at Clogher/Waterdyke was in an equally poor condition.
Ms O'Brien said while a project is planned there, she maintained flashing warning signs should be erected in the area to warn drivers of the state of the road.
Independent councillor Frank Roche said he was getting calls on a daily basis from hauliers who were damaging vehicles on both the main roads.
Meanwhile, Fianna Fáil councillor Willie O'Leary said a section of the N72, a few kilometres east of Fermoy, from McDonald Feeds to Killamagner National School, “has fallen into complete disrepair".
“It's part of a national route and it's completely unacceptable. Recent heavy rain has worsened the surface even further,” Mr O'Leary said.
Fianna Fáil councillor Frank O'Flynn said he had spoken to one driver who recently had both front tyres burst on that section of road.
“There have been numerous accidents there. It's part of the main road from Rosslare to Killarney,” he said,
“Our national routes in this area are absolutely appalling. Some of them are now of the same standard of our local roads,” Ms O'Brien said.
Fine Gael councillor Noel McCarthy described both the N72 and N73 as “an absolute disgrace".
“Our calls for funding are falling on deaf ears. We should demand a meeting with TII,” he said, to which Mr Fogarty said he agreed.
Mr McCarthy added that the main street in Fermoy, Patrick Street, was in a deplorable condition and TII is also responsible for its upkeep.
Fine Gael councillor John Paul O'Shea said the N72 west of Mallow “has also deteriorated badly in places".
Padraig Barrett, the council's director of roads, said unfortunately TII doesn't have enough money for all the work being requested by local authorities and it is having to prioritise projects.