William Eichler 12 October 2018

Potholes ‘wreak havoc’ with drivers

Potholes ‘wreak havoc’ with drivers image

A lack of sufficient funding to maintain local roads means potholes are ‘wreaking havoc’ with drivers, motoring body says.

The RAC says that the number of call-outs the organisation has received this year for pothole-related issues remains ‘stubbornly high.’

Over the last 12 months the RAC dealt with 14,220 breakdowns where the ‘overwhelming likelihood’ was that they were caused by potholes.

This represents 1.5% of all its call-outs during this period and is the second highest percentage ever recorded since the RAC started analysing this data in 2006.

The motoring body’s Pothole Index also shows that motorists are now more than 2.5 times as likely to suffer a pothole breakdown than they were 12 years ago.

‘There is little doubt local road conditions in many parts of the country are substandard and have been so for quite some time,’ said RAC chief engineer David Bizley.

‘Data from this quarter’s RAC Pothole Index supports this showing there has been a steady deterioration in road condition over the last 18 months with the latest quarter not showing a significant improvement.’

Mr Bizley acknowledged that the Government had attempted to address the problem of deteriorating local roads with a £100m funding boost in March this year.

However, he said this had to be seen in the context of a maintenance backlog of over £9.3bn.

‘We need a 10-year plan with ring-fenced funding that will eliminate the backlog of preventative maintenance that will stop the plague of potholes appearing every time there is bad weather,’ he said.

Responding to the RAC’s findings, Cllr Martin Tett, the Local Government Association’s (LGA) Transport spokesman, said: ‘Keeping roads safe for all users is one of the most important jobs councils do and is reflected in the fact that local authorities are fixing a pothole every 21 seconds.

‘However, only long-term, consistent and fairer government investment in local road maintenance can allow councils to embark on the widespread improvement of our roads that is desperately needed.’

Cllr Tett noted that central Government spends 52 times more on maintaining national roads than they do on local roads, where journeys begin and end.

He also repeated the LGA’s call on the Government to annually reinvest a portion of existing fuel duty into local road maintenance.

This would ‘generate much needed funding for councils to spend on addressing the £9.3bn roads repair backlog which would give all road users better roads that are safer and more resilient to potholes,' he said.

Will First Homes address local need? image

Will First Homes address local need?

As a new form of affordable housing, First Homes, is set to come into effect from 28 June 2021, Matt Hare considers how will it impact on future development.
SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Principal Clinical/Counselling Psychologist

Essex County Council
Negotiable
Principal Clinical/Counselling PsychologistPermanent, Part Time£51,510 to £55,000 per annum (Pro Rata)The Divisional Based Intervention Team (D-BIT) a England, Essex, Chelmsford
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Assistant Director of Housing

Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council
£90,205 per annum      
This is an excellent time to work within Rotherham. We are passionate about the place and the people who live, work and visit here. Rotherham, South Yorkshire
Recuriter: Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council

Joint Assistant Director – Commissioning and Performance

Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council
£90,205
As the Assistant Director, you will be passionate about achieving excellent performance and determined to... Rotherham, South Yorkshire
Recuriter: Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council

Social Workers - Family Support and Protection - North Essex

Essex County Council
Negotiable
Social Workers and Senior Practitioners- Family Support and Protection - North EssexPermanent, Full Time£32,065 to £49,183 per annumLocation
Recuriter: Essex County Council

School Attendance Lead

The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea Council
£44,370 - £50,964 per annum
This is a multi-layered role, in which you'll both be a trusted advisor, and you will be representative of the legal need for... Kensington and Chelsea, London (Greater)
Recuriter: The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea Council

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how how flexible workspaces can lead the way in regeneration for local authorities, Why local authority intervention is key to successful urban regeneration schemes and if the Government’s challenge of embracing beauty is an opportunity for communities.

The March issue also takes a closer look at Blackburn with Darwen Council's first digital health hub to help people gain control over health and care services.

Register for your free digital issue