Councils pay £ 8million a year in compensation for potholes Bedford News

English councils spent more than $ 8 million on pothole compensation claims in 2019-2020

Councils across England have paid more than £ 8million in compensation in one year for the damage caused by the potholes.

Manchester council alone has spent £ 1.16million to settle claims caused by unsafe road surfaces, more than double the next nearest council payment.

The biggest single payment – by St Helens Council – was almost £ 200,000, paid to a cyclist who suffered multiple injuries in a pothole accident.

Graphic: Kim Mogg / JPI Media

The figures were uncovered by an access to information request from the online Heycar marketplace and revealed that behind Manchester councils, Derbyshire and Essex paid the most in compensation, spending £ 500,965 and £ 472,164 respectively between April 2019 and March 2020. Data did not cover communal areas in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland.

In total, local authorities in England have spent £ 8.3million to compensate drivers for damage to their vehicles, as well as for injuries sustained by road users who hit potholes.

The study also looked at how much it costs boards to repair potholes, revealing huge differences across the country. While the average cost of repairs was around £ 80, the amount spent by individual advice ranged from £ 18 at Torbay to £ 398 at Bexley.

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He also revealed some of the more serious claims and payments made by individual councils.

In addition to the cyclist who was awarded nearly £ 200,000 after being seriously injured in an accident on the A49, other major claims included £ 20,500 paid by Brent Council in London to a motorcyclist knocked over from his bike after hitting a pothole, and £ 4,500 payment by the Greenwich Council to a driver who crashed his car after hitting a pothole.

The RAC said UK roads were in a “hopeless state” and earlier this year reported a record increase in the number of pothole-related calls. Between January and March 2021, the recovery service handled 4,694 pothole problems, up from 1,461 in the previous quarter.

Dan Powell, editor at heycar, said: “Potholes are such a familiar sight, and I’m sure everyone will have a ‘worse road’ in their area that comes to mind when the Potholes are mentioned – but they are much more than just an inconvenience.

“They are causing real damage to people and their vehicles and the rate at which potholes are appearing is too fast for advice to follow. So even more claims will come in, further reducing the funds available for road repairs.

“Driving should be a feel-good experience, especially after last year’s restrictions. However, poorly maintained roads only breed worry and frustration. The pothole crisis only seems to be getting worse, and more funds need to be allocated to help councils fill them faster. “

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This notice was published: 2021-06-24 10:28:02

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