Nova Scotia

Stellarton man handed cash, coffee, cannabis for filling potholes

For the past couple of days, 22-year-old John McCue has been out with his snow shovel filling in potholes on Westville Road with gravel and fill. He said the authorities don't like what he's doing, but drivers do.

John McCue started patching Westville Road after a particularly bumpy drive

John McCue, 22, said drivers have given him cash, coffee and joints for filling in potholes along Westville Road. (Submitted by John McCue)

This story was originally published March 27, 2019

Pot for filling potholes seems like a decent trade says a 22-year-old man in Stellarton, N.S.

Joints, in addition to cash and coffee, are among some of the ways drivers have thanked John McCue for his work.

For the past couple of days — much to the dismay of authorities who have warned him to leave the job to the professionals — McCue has been out with his snow shovel moving gravel and fill from ditches to patch up potholes along Westville Road.

"I did have the town police come," McCue said during an interview with CBC's Mainstreet on Tuesday. "The RCMP came and the Department of Transportation came. They kind of threatened me with charges."

McCue said he got the idea to start filling the potholes along Westville Road after hitting a big one while on a drive with his mother.

But he said the authorities have told him he's impeding traffic.

"I've hitchhiked for years and I've been around highways with much faster cars going much closer," he said.

"I know how to be safe around a vehicle in motion."

John McCue has this sign with him while he's filling in potholes. (Submitted by John McCue)

When Mainstreet called, McCue said he was on Westville Road filling in more potholes. He said he was feeling a little sore from the work.

The pothole situation on the road is much better than it was a few days ago, McCue said. He said some of the holes were quite deep.

"There was one story a couple of weeks ago where a car was driving through and it nailed one of the biggest potholes here and it ripped the axle right off the car," said McCue.

He said people have been giving him donations of cash, coffee and cannabis for his efforts.

"Yep, I'm getting definitely a lot of tips — I had a couple of people give me some joints, too, which is pretty nice," he said. 

McCue said he's starting a new job out west in two months and said he would like to use some of the money he's made filling in the potholes toward living expenses, like food.

"I'm probably going to buy some weed with it, not going to lie," he said.

With files from CBC's Radio's Mainstreet