Monday July 28, 2014





Homeowners tired of drivers ending up in their yard

10-year-old pear tree taken out in latest incident
Keith Anderson

Vehicles travel way too fast on Sixth Avene, says homeowner Phil Hiller.

Phil Hiller and his wife Kathy Bentley bought their bungalow at the corner of Sixth Avenue and Pleasant Street 12 years ago.

While they love their house, the street name is misleading — it hasn’t been exactly pleasant.

Three times drivers have veered onto their property, leaving trees and fences smashed.

“I’ve phoned the police so many times about people speeding up this hill,” he said.

The latest incident occurred Saturday afternoon, when the couple was away. They returned home at 5:30 p.m. to police officers and a crashed 1993 Mercury Sable on their property.

Underneath the car was a 10-year-old pear tree freshly pruned and sprayed for spring. The trunk, as thick as a roll of toilet paper, was splintered and severed about one metre from the roots.

The entire corner of unpainted fence, made of thick planks of wood, was left in broken pieces.

And the couple is tired. Tired of people racing along Sixth Avenue beside their home and tired of facing repairs to their yard and fence that insurance may or may not cover.

Tire tracks still show the Sable’s route from the street across some young shrubs and right into the tree and fence.

Hiller said the tree usually yields about 400 pounds of fruit, which he and his wife give to friends. It will take a new tree years to get to the same size.

“Where do you get another tree to replace it?”

The last time the fence was smashed, Hiller was advised to contact his home insurer. He did, and while insurance covered the cost, he was hit with an increase in premiums for several years.

This time, he has gone to ICBC as the driver’s insurer. He’s waiting for an adjuster.

He’d like to see something done to divert traffic or at least slow it down. Because Sixth Avenue is a main road, the options are limited.

But Hiller is afraid of what might happen.

“We could have been on the other side of the fence,” he said.

City traffic officials could not be reached.


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