Majority of councils are accused of treating potholes with a quick ‘throw and go’ fix that lasts just WEEKS, as estimates suggest fixing Britain’s damaged roads would take NINE years and cost £12.64billion
- It could cost £75.7million for every local authority in England and Wales
- The Daily Mail is campaigning for an end to the pothole plague
Councils have been accused of failing to repair potholes properly as it was claimed the majority use a temporary ‘throw and go’ method to fix them.
Motorists and cyclists frequently complain of potholes reappearing months – or even weeks – after being repaired.
A manager at construction giant JCB believes this is because of councils relying on a quick ‘throw and go’ fix – where damaged ground is not removed or repaired before tarmac is used to fill it.
The Daily Mail is campaigning for an end to the pothole plague, which is costing drivers millions of pounds in repairs while putting cyclists at risk of injury or death. JCB has created a £200,000 ‘Pothole Pro’ – a vehicle designed to clear and cut away damaged ground to ensure the cavity will not collapse again.
Ben Rawding, general manager for the Pothole Pro, said of the ‘throw and go’ method: ‘It’s only temporary – the pothole could collapse in anything from two weeks to two years. I know of one council which repaired the same pothole four or five times within the space of a year.’
Councils have been accused of failing to repair potholes properly as it was claimed the majority use a temporary ‘throw and go’ method to fix them
Industry figures published last year showed it would take nine years to clear the pothole backlog, at a cost of £12.64billion – the equivalent of £75.7million for every local authority in England and Wales
Many councils claim they do not have enough funding from Whitehall to tackle potholes effectively.
Industry figures published last year showed it would take nine years to clear the pothole backlog, at a cost of £12.64billion – the equivalent of £75.7million for every local authority in England and Wales.
Councils are responsible for fixing pocked roads, while National Highways manages motorways and major A roads.
It is also understood many local authorities use a combination of permanent and temporary methods to repair roads. However, Mr Rawding claimed too many council bosses were reluctant to change their ways.
Potholes are formed when water seeps through cracks in the road and freezes, then thaws.
Water expands once it has turned to ice, leaving a gap in the ground below after it has melted, which eventually collapses under the weight of moving vehicles.
Consumer disputes expert Scott Dixon, who runs thecomplaintsresolver.co.uk, said councils were only adding to their costs by failing to fix potholes permanently.
David Renard, transport spokesman for the Local Government Association said: ‘Councils work tirelessly to repair our local roads, with one pothole being repaired by a council every 19 seconds.’
‘Councils would much prefer to spend money on preventing potholes. However, these challenges are being compounded by soaring inflation, with a shortage of materials like bitumen pushing up repair costs by over 20 per cent.’
‘Shortage of materials’
Tell us about the worst potholes near you and we might FIX IT FOR FREE!
We want you to nominate the largest pothole in your area…and then we might pop round to repair it for free!
MailOnline and This is Money readers can send pictures of the worst potholes near where they live and you will be automatically entered into the draw to have it permanently removed.
When a winner is chosen, JCB will send its crater-fixing PotholePro machine to repair it.
Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org following the five steps below:
1. Send an email with the subject heading ‘POTHOLE’.
2. Please attach an image no bigger than 2MB of the pothole.
3. Include a brief description of the pothole and just how bad you think it is.
4. Tell us its whereabouts, including the road name and closest city, town or village.
5. Include your full name and a telephone number in case we need to contact you to find out further details about the pothole you’ve nominated – and potentially fix it.
We will choose a selection of the worst potholes you’ve nominated and put it to a reader vote on which one should be repaired by JCB’s PotholePro free of charge.
Personal details will not be shared with any third parties.
> Find out more about the JCB PotholePro and how it could fix a road near you