NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Commuters are calling for action after a dip in the roadway creates a dangerous drive on a popular roadway on Manhattan’s West Side.
Who is responsible for this issue?
CBS2’s Jenna DeAngelis went to the New York City Department of Transportation to demand answers.
The dark, early morning commute was interrupted by the dangerous dip on the Henry Hudson Parkway from overnight construction.
CBS2 witnessed many cars driving southbound just past the exit for West 95th Street experience the jarring drop. Sparks flew from one car. A car passing by nearly bottomed out.
“Next thing I know, I was half airborne, came down, couldn’t see where the roadway, where it was, what was going on. Just smashed in hard,” said driver Steven Schlegel. “Lost the mirror in my car, the entire rim cracked.”
He was forced to change his tire.
CBS2 noticed signs indicating uneven lanes to warn drivers, but not a dip. This went on for hours before any crews came out.
With more cars on the road, drivers naturally slowed down, but one motorist still ended up crashing into the wall.
“The rough road made my tire busted, so I had to save myself and my car,” Masoud Usman said.
Usman pointed out dirt and debris in the road creating another challenge.
A driver trying to avoid one collision says he spun out, resulting in a crash with another car. Another driver stopped to help and was in disbelief.
“Look at this. You hit a pothole, and your tire will blow out,” he said.
“It should be addressed. It’s very dangerous,” said Upper West Side resident Eric Wyka.
At 3 p.m., crews were not making any repairs, despite signs stating otherwise. Traffic was reduced to one lane and was backed up to the George Washington Bridge.
Watch Jenna DeAngelis’ report —
Earlier, we went to the city’s Department of Transportation to ask why the road was left like this.
“It was an error by our contractor and we have them out fixing it,” said DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg.
“So what’s the DOT procedure for holding a subcontractor accountable like in this case?” DeAngelis asked.
“First of all, I want them to fix it. Then we’ll obviously take a look at what went wrong. There may be something we do to the contractor, but right now we just want to get it fixed and make sure it’s safe,” Trottenberg said.
Hours after DeAngelis demanded answers, crews were out at the location, but no work was being done while traffic mayhem grew minutes before rush hour.
After 5 p.m., however, construction equipment was moving.
A contractor who did not want to go on camera said they had to wait on permits to be approved by the DOT before crews can get to work.
Friday night, the backup spanned from the 95th Street exit to 102nd Street.
Some drivers said they had been sitting in bumper-to-bumper traffic for hours.
“It isn’t until you escalate it and that’s when they decide to come out and resolve things, so I’m not surprised at all,” one driver told CBS2’s Cory James.
Crews were expected to be on the parkway all night to repair the road.
The big question of who is responsible and who will be held accountable is still unknown.
CBS2 reached out to the DOT to see what the holdup was and request to interview the commissioner again, but so far we have not heard back.
You can get the latest news, sports and weather on our brand new CBS New York app. Download here.