'Trip hazard' not inspected for three years after woman injures back

Tree roots

The tree's roots initially caused damage to the homeowner's front garden wall in 2018. - Credit: Adele Payne

Uneven pavement in Rainham which caused a woman to trip and injure her back was left uninspected for years.

Rainham-based Adele Payne, 62, called on Havering Council to inspect the location after her 82-year-old mother Sylvia Payne, who has osteoporosis, tripped over the kerb in 2018 and injured her back.

Adele believes roots from a nearby tree had grown underneath the path and made the pavement uneven, creating a trip hazard outside Sylvia's home.

However, the roots were not inspected until three years later. 

Cabinet member for environment at Havering Council, Cllr Osman Dervish, confirmed officers inspected the tree and damage caused by its roots last week.

He added they "will now decide the best course of action to resolve these issues and ensure the property is safe".

Adele Payne

The crack in Sylvia’s front garden wall. - Credit: Adele Payne

Adele said: “It has taken all of this time and so many emails to everyone in the world, prior to this the council did not care.  

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“Mum has tripped up the kerb and so now the damage to the wall is secondary. The council don’t maintain things and they need to.”  

Adele Payne

The damaged pavement has caused Sylvia to trip up the kerb, which injured her back. - Credit: Adele Payne

Cllr Dervish added: “We try our best to avoid cutting down trees unless absolutely necessary, and we may instead be able to install a root barrier and repair the damaged footpath.”

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