Pothole cost continues despite work and fund

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POTHOLES are being filled more than last year, although the cost of reported damage has risen, according to a recent annual survey.

The 20th Annual Local Authority Road Maintenance survey found a 33 per cent increase in the number of potholes filled over the last year − but no reduction in the amount needed to bring the network up to scratch.

Despite local authorities reporting an increase in their overall maintenance budget, such as the county’s £140m pothole boost, one in six roads in England and Wales is still in poor condition and an estimated £12.16bn is needed to repair the road network.

Alan Mackenzie, chairman of the Asphalt Industry Alliance (AIA), which produces the survey, said: ‘Essentially, the money spent on filling the 2.7m potholes is wasted − it is inefficient and short-term in its effectiveness.’

The survey also found that authorities in England and Wales have seen their average annual budget shortfall drop by 24 per cent and that it would take 13 years to clear the pothole backlog.

It also found a dramatic increase in the amount paid in road user compensation claims in England (excluding London) which, at £20.2m, has doubled since last year.