5 On Your Side

Five On Your Side Helps Pave Way For Driveway Fix

Posted August 3, 2004 3:30 a.m. EDT

— During the spring and summer, paving businesses are known to stop by peoples home's offering deals on extra asphalt they have. When a Franklin County woman did not get the deal she thought she should, she called Five On Your Side's Monica Laliberte for help.

At first glance, Evelyn Vandermergel's new driveway looks good. Take a closer look and grass and weeds pop through the pavement.

Vandermergel's driveway used to be gravel. In December, a man from Hawk's Paving knocked on her door and offered to pave it with asphalt and make a wheelchair path.

"He got me out of bed when I was sick. The young man said he would do an excellent job, a very good job. [He said] they've been in the area for 25 years,'" she said.

Vandermergel agreed to pay Vincent Lucas $2,000 for the job.

After the work was done, Lucas gave Vandermergel an invoice that guaranteed the job for one year, but it included some big exceptions.

"He wrote here, 'Not responsible for grass or weeds, cracks or pothole.' Now, nobody's going to give somebody money to do a job like that," she said.

A few weeks later, Vandermergel noticed marks she says are from her husband's wheelchair and bubbling. She says the grass and weeds kept getting worse.

Vandermergel called Hawk Paving. She says Lucas returned twice and promised to fix the problems. When he did not, she called Five on Your Side for help.

"I would like them to fix it right," Vandermergel said.

Owner Bruce Lucas says he did not realize there was a problem until he received a call from Five On Your Side.

The next day, he personally assessed the problem, saying the asphalt needed more time to cure.

While he reminded Five On Your Side that he does not guarantee grass and weeds will not grow through, he did have a worker burn the growth off and seal the pavement.

Vandermergel says she is fine with the fix as long as the grass and weeds do not grow back. She says if she had to do it all over again, she would not get asphalt.

"I would sooner have the gravel as to go through paying a lot of money to have it as it should have been from the beginning," she said.

Bruce Lucas promised Five On Your Side and Vandermergel that if she had any more problems he would go back out if she called him. When she saw more grass, she called Lucas, and true to his word, he followed through and got rid of the grass.