Chris Ames 15 January 2020

Pothole breakdowns fall as Beast impact fades

Pothole breakdowns fall as Beast impact fades image

The RAC attended significantly fewer breakdowns for pothole-related faults in 2019 than the previous year, despite a surge in the last quarter.

The motoring organisation released the analysis of breakdown data to coincide with National Pothole Day on Wednesday (15 January).

It said its patrols attended just short of 9,200 breakdowns for problems such as distorted wheels, broken suspensions springs and damaged shock absorbers last year, down from 13,000 in 2018.

The RAC pointed out that 2018 saw a dramatic increase in potholes following the ‘Beast from the East’ severe weather and that the 2019 figure still represented 1.1% of all breakdowns it attended during the year.

It added that it attended more than 2,000 breakdowns that are likely to be attributed to potholes in the final three months of 2019, which was 300 more than during the same period in 2018.

Between October and December, 0.9% of all breakdowns were for pothole-related faults, up from 0.8% in the previous three months and up from 0.8% in the fourth quarter of 2018.

Head of roads policy Nicholas Lyes said: 'Our figures clearly show the problem of potholes has not gone away. Our patrols are still attending on average around one pothole-related breakdown every hour of the day.

'We anticipate the Government will pledge further funds to help cash-strapped councils mend potholes in the March Budget, but such pledges are only chipping away at the problem, and they’re unfortunately not addressing the root cause of why so much of the UK is still characterised by crumbling road surfaces.'

The RAC said its Pothole Index suggests the widespread problem of potholes and poor-quality roads remains as the Index currently stands at 1.7, down from 1.8 in the third quarter of 2019.

This means drivers are 1.7 times more likely to break down as a result of pothole-related damage than they were in 2006 when the RAC first started collecting data.

The motoring organisation describes the index as ‘an accurate long-term indicator of the health of the UK’s roads’.

It added that despite the relatively mild winter in the UK so far, it is concerned that the arrival of colder conditions in the next few months will likely trigger a widespread outbreak of more potholes, 'causing expensive damage to thousands of drivers’ vehicles and creating new road safety hazards'.

Cllr David Renard, the Local Government Association’s transport spokesman, said: Councils are on the side of all road users, fixing a pothole every 17 seconds, and want to work with government to tackle our national road repairs backlog, which will take more than £9bn and a decade to complete.

‘Providing councils with funding in the forthcoming Budget would mean they can invest in road maintenance and other infrastructure projects.’

This article first appeared on Transport Network.

Managing short-term lets image

Managing short-term lets

Deborah Heather explores the issue of homestay rentals and managing short-term lets within council boundaries.
SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Development Management Engineer

North Yorkshire County Council
£24,313 to £34,788
An excellent candidate is required to prove to have the desire and ambition to progress and develop into an exciting career, and... North Yorkshire
Recuriter: North Yorkshire County Council

Pension Funding Accountant - 12 month Fixed Term Contract

Essex County Council
£38380 - £43350 per annum + Plus Flexible Working, Pension etc
Please note this is a 12-month fixed term contract. We have an exciting opportunity for a Pension Funding Accountant who will join a fund, boasting one of the largest numbers of admitted employers within the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS). England, Essex, Chelmsford
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Chief Officer

Cheshire & Merseyside Health & Care Partnership
Salary commensurate with qualifications and experience
We are committed to eliminating inequality in our populations by working collaboratively to improve the health and wellbeing of our residents Cheshire & Merseyside
Recuriter: Cheshire & Merseyside Health & Care Partnership

Quality Improvement Officer

North Yorkshire County Council
£34,788.00 to £38,813.00
Would you like the opportunity to positively influence the quality of the social care market?   Northallerton, North Yorkshire
Recuriter: North Yorkshire County Council

Housing Supply Manager

Redbridge London Borough Council
£48,492 - £51,450 per annum
We are seeking an individual looking to work in a resident-centred service that offers good quality accommodation options.  Redbridge, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Redbridge London Borough Council

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how public sector organisations can unlock the hidden value in their land, and why a new approach to construction could help boost the outcomes of the Government’s One Public Estate programme.

The December issue also considers why learnings from ancient cities could provide the key to promoting wellbeing in the modern built environment. It also contains a case study on how the London Borough of Westminster has provided high quality care for the elderly alongside a block of luxury apartments.

Register for your free digital issue