Three quarters of motorists want potholes to be fixed within a week – but the reality is it can take councils several months to repair themMon, 15/05/2017
Potholes are a nuisance. They have the potential to damage cars, and in worst-case scenarios they can even cause an accident. It’s for these reasons that motorists are keen to seethe time it takes for them to be repaired decrease!
Robb Hull, The Mail Online,
More than three quarters (76 per cent) of drivers say potholes should be filled within a week of being reported to authorities, according to the results of a new survey.
The poll of 18,000 motorists by the AA found that other drivers had more optimistic opinions concerning repair times, with almost one in five (18 per cent) saying 24 hours is the maximum time it should take for a pothole to be fixed.
The motoring organisation said that councils are expected to fill the deepest and most dangerous potholes within a few hours, but drivers sometimes have to endure rutted roads for several months if they're deemed less significant.
Last month, a coroner urged Surrey County Council to reconsider how it rates the severity of potholes after a cyclist was killed due to a poor road repair.
Ralph Brazier, 52, was thrown from his bike in Weybridge on March 1 2016 after riding over a pothole which had previously been given an ineffective repair and was assessed by the council as only requiring further attention within five working days.
The pothole problem is some locations is so bad that locals are turning to unconventional methods to highlight their whereabouts to unsuspecting drivers.
This week, photos emerged of flowerbeds being planted in rutted roads in Bath as part of protests by residents about the badly potholes routes in the area.
Jason Dorley-Brown, 52, and his gang of 'guerrilla gardeners' have been decorating the 'death trap' holes with pansies to raise awareness of the potentially dangerous tarmac imperfections in the spa city.
In the AA's new report, president Edmund King called for the 'worsening condition of our road network' to be addressed quickly to prevent deaths of vulnerable road users such as cyclists and motorcyclists, and to reduce compensation payouts for vehicle damage.
'It can’t be right that one council could fill a lower-risk pothole within three weeks, while a neighbouring council needs four weeks,' Mr King said.
'Councils should have a back-stop deadline, but with emphasis on carrying out the repairs quicker.
'With the General Election just around the corner, it would be an ideal time for all parties to tell the public how they intend to repair and improve our roads.
'Whoever forms the government on June 9, they will need to act fast or we will continue to have moon-like craters on our roads into the next parliament.'
A recent study by the Ashphalt Industry Alliance found that local authorities need more than £12 billion of funding to bring the road network up to scratch.
The gap between the amount councils say they received in the last year and what they require to keep roads in reasonable order is almost £730 million.
A spokesman for the Local Government Association, which represents more than 370 councils in England and Wales, said: 'Councils take the maintenance of their roads very seriously, fixing a pothole every 19 seconds.
'This amounts to 1.75 million potholes per year, at an average of over 10,400 per local authority.'
Although it would be ideal if potholes could be fixed on a tighter timescale, the reality is the cost of repairs exceeds the budget give to councils to repair them. This means potholes are fixed in order of severity, with the most dangerous potholes being fixed quicker than those deemed less severe.