Bonita road underwater, neighbors want answers

Posted at 11:13 PM, Aug 03, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-04 06:57:45-04

A Bonita Springs man says the state is to blame for his road being underwater.

Bill Cobb lives off Vincent Road, it's a dirt road that runs into Bonita Beach Road.  "This is probably, mid-calf to knee deep," said Cobb, pointing to water all over the road.

He says there are frequent washouts along this two mile road that makes driving dangerous. “It’s safety issue, anybody that tries to drive through the road behind me"

Cobb says the South Florida Water Management District is to blame for the flooding.  The agency manages CREW, a preserve that runs alongside Vincent Road.  

He says SFWMD is allowing the public to use this private road, which is wearing it down.

“What's happening down there is a result of a large amount of rainfall in the local area. the water flow is performing as it has for many, many years," said SFWMD Spokesman Randy Smith.

Cobb and his neighbors have taken it upon themselves to patch up the road.  He estimates he's sunk thousands of dollars into it.

"Purchasing fill dirt, purchasing base rock for the road, we have graded the road, I have paid someone to come out and grade this road."

But Cobb shouldn't expect to be reimbursed anytime soon.

"Taxpayers don't pay for repairs on private property," said Smith.

After months of pleading with the district, that response doesn't surprise Cobb.

"I am very angry but not surprised."

Cobb says his neighbors will help him make more repairs to the road once the flood waters subside.