New research suggests that more than two million potholes could be left unrepaired every year, even after the Treasury’s cash injection from yesterday’s Budget.
As we reported in our Budget coverage, chancellor of the exchequer Rishi Sunak confirmed that £500 million extra would be allocated annually over the next five years to combat the problem.
The news was well received. Neil Worth, road safety officer at GEM Motoring Assist said: “We are delighted that the chancellor is willing to pour £2.5 billion into potholes over the next five years.”
“We would like to see action taken immediately that will give national highways agencies and local authorities the means to ramp up their programme of pothole repairs. Let there be no delay in improving the state of our roads.”
However, last year’s Annual Local Authority Road Maintenance (ALARM) report indicates more still will be needed. It showed an extra £657 million was required to repair potholes last year in England and Wales.
Assuming the numbers carry over, that leaves an annual shortfall of £157 million in funding. Sunak’s cash injection may be more plaster than cast.
2.4 million potholes a year left unrepaired
Consider that the average unplanned pothole repair cost costs £65.33. Do the maths, and you’re left with around 2.4 million potholes unrepaired every year. That’s just over 10 million potholes over the next five years. Over this period, the government wants to see 50 million repaired.
Still, five-sixths of the job is a start. And since 2013, local authorities have spent £74 million in compensation for damage caused by potholes.
“The state of the roads in England and Wales is no secret to anyone, so people up and down the country will welcome this latest announcement of a significant increase in the funding to repair our roads,” said Souad Wrixen, marketing director of Citroen UK.
Citroen has highlighted the remaining deficit in funding, and the suitability of its cars for dealing with the remaining ruts in the road. Citroen’s progressive hydraulic cushion tech comes fitted to the C5 Aircross and C4 Cactus models as standard.