The number of pothole-related breakdowns doubled in the first three months of 2018, compared to that of the last quarter of last year, the RAC has said.
Research by the breakdown firm found that its fleet responded to 5,540 callouts for damage caused by potholes between January and March (Q1) this year. In Q4 of 2017, the number was just 2,841.
Damage to shock absorbers, broken suspension springs and distorted wheels were all reasons as to why RAC crews were called out, with the percentage of callouts attributed to potholes being 2.3 per cent in Q1 2018 – the third highest since 2006, only following behind the same periods in 2017 and 2015.
Despite this rise, the number wasn’t as high as the RAC predicted, although it expects the next quarter to be a better representation of the state of the Britain’s roads.
Bad weather from the ‘Beast from the East’ in February and early March led to freezing temperatures and excessive salt spreading, leading to deteriorated roads.
RAC chief engineer David Bizley said: “Few would disagree that the harsh cold weather experienced over the last three months had led to a further deterioration of road surfaces.
“The figure for the first three months of 2018 was not as high as we had been expecting, probably due to the fact that that the weather hit relatively late in the quarter. For this reason we feel we are likely to see more vehicles suffering pothole damage in the second quarter of 2018 compared to recent years.”
A study by the Asphalt Industry Alliance recently found that there was a £5.6bn annual funding deficit to fill potholes, with an estimated £9.3bn needed to fill every blemish in England and Wales. The annual study also said that a fifth of local roads are in “poor condition”.
Road safety and breakdown service GEM Motoring Assist has issued its seven steps to build a successful case if you believe your car has been damaged by a pothole, and have sufficient evidence.
April 18, 2018