FED-UP motorists have called for a road and its curbs to be improved immediately after their cars were repeatedly damaged.

Residents of St Michaels Road in Benfleet have had tyres punctured and bodywork cracked and scratched - and they’ve had enough.

Sid Murray, 74, has had a cracked wheel arch - and two punctures.

He said: “When I was driving another car was coming from the opposite direction, and I had no choice but to go onto the grass verge to allow enough room to pass. My car then dropped down from the tarmac and slide into the ditch.

“I wasn’t going very fast, but because there is a gap of a few inches from road to ground it slid down and two of my wheels were ruined.

“People use the road quite often but it’s very narrow, and not many seem to realise this.

“A neighbour of mine also suffered the same fate and got a puncture.

“Something needs to be done to improve it before a more serious crash happens.”

Sue Cook, 58, said she was visiting a friend who lives in the road and had to swerve and go partially off the tarmac. She added: “There was a big bump because of the drop and I had a flat tyre. It’s quite treacherous and could do so much damage to cars if drivers are caught out.”

A spokesman for Essex Highways said roads like St Michaels are inspected regularly. He said: “The white line marks the edge of the carriageway, so anyone driving off the road is responsible for taking care that it is safe to do so.

“Verges such as this one are inspected as part of our routine inspection regime or following email enquiries we receive.

“Where the drop from the carriageway is more than 15cm a defect will be recorded, risk assessed and prioritised.

“Verges are not part of the carriageway and it is the driver’s own responsibility if they leave the road for any reason.”