The RAC has warned that last week’s period of extremely cold weather could result in a plague of potholes appearing in the spring.

Although the chaos caused by the ‘Beast from the East’ seems to have subsided, the breakdown recovery service fears that water has found its way into cracks in the roads, frozen and then expanded, causing even more potholes.

It will become apparent whether the prediction is accurate or not in the coming weeks and months, with the RAC’s quarterly pothole index in early April giving a good indication.

The last pothole index showed that RAC patrols attended 11 per cent more breakdowns that could be attributed to potholes in the final quarter of 2017 than in the final quarter of 2016.

Simon Williams, spokesman for the RAC, commented: “While the snow caused serious short-term travel disruption, motorists will sadly be suffering its consequences for months, and possibly years, to come, as our roads were already in a poor state of repair before the extreme cold weather hit. Unfortunately, Siberian weather was the last thing our roads needed, as the freezing conditions wreak havoc with any road surface that is in bad repair.

“We fear that this spring we may see the emergence of almost as many potholes as daffodils. Although this is the season that is supposed to signal the start of better, warmer weather, this year we think it’s likely to be the start of even worse road surfaces for motorists to drive on.

“Despite a succession of government pothole funds, the state of the UK roads is still poor. Road users find themselves faced with a multitude of different types of potholes and road surface defects – so much so that that these defects are worthy of individual classification in the way that naturalists classify species and categorise sub-species.”

Tristan Shale-Hester


March 8, 2018

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