Pothole misery to ‘last two months’

PUBLISHED: 12:10 19 February 2013 | UPDATED: 12:41 19 February 2013


Craters blamed on ‘cheap materials’. Campaigning website claims Britain’s roads now have ‘more holes than Swiss cheese’.

Motorists should brace themselves for up to two months’ misery, as a decade of reliance on cheap and brittle road repair materials finally takes its toll - claims a campaigning website.

After the UK experienced more than a foot of rainfall in November and December, motorists will face increased journey times to work as councils and highways authorities close lanes for repairs, says Warranty Direct’s Potholes.co.uk

The website alleges use of cheaper materials – brittle, porous stone mastic asphalt as opposed to the more hard-wearing hot rolled asphalt – to surface and fix roads over the last 10 to 15 years is now leaving Britain gridlocked.

Data taken from 10,000 pothole reports on Potholes.co.uk reveals that, not only are the craters appearing on the UK’s crumbling network deeper than ever before, increasing in depth from three to four inches on average in the last two years, but that the problem is not limited to smaller, rural roads.

The Local Government Association has revealed that the Department for Transport will reduce budgets for councils by £442m over the five years of the Comprehensive Spending Review, leaving authorities £164m worse off by 2014/15.

Warranty Direct managing director, Duncan McClure Fisher, said: “The pothole epidemic is the direct result of years of under-investment in our roads by the Government. Temporary fixes have just escalated the problem over the years and our highways have now got more holes than Swiss cheese.

“Unless more permanent repair materials and methods are adopted immediately, Britain may never again be able to get through a winter without having to contend with a Third World road network.”

Potholes are created when moisture seeps into cracks in the street surface and freezes, cracking open the road when it freezes and expands.

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