Government vows to tackle England’s pothole hotspots

Pothole on road

Spotted a hole in the road? It could be time to look forward to a smoother commute as the government sets out to fund repairs on England’s most battered roads.

On-road businesses like Uber and Deliveroo are being called upon to help ministers with an in-depth review of the country’s roads, helping target those stretches most desperate for repair.

This follows the £2.5bn pledged for pothole repairs and highway maintenance in the 2020 Budget.

Pothole hotspots

The Department for Transport (DfT) will share data collected by various on-road businesses with mapping company Gaist to reveal those roads most in need of funding. 

Companies such as Tesco and Ocado will also be involved in the mapping, while local authorities will be asked to highlight their own pothole hotspots.

Once collated, audit data will be used to ensure the right level of funding is allocated.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: “I want our roads to be as safe as possible, so during the lockdown we’ve resurfaced hundreds of miles of road. But now I want to go further by identifying critical potholes and ensuring these are fixed as quickly as possible.”

“We’re teaming up with delivery companies, who know the roads well, in order to map out where remaining potholes exist and then relentlessly target them with our record £2.5bn to pothole repair fund.

“Better road surfaces benefit motorists and cyclists alike ensuring the back to school and work environment is safer for everyone.”

Dangerous conditions

Research shows that Britain’s pothole problem has steadily been getting worse over the last few years, causing damage to bikes and vehicles, and increasing the risk of accidents.

Data from a Which? survey highlights the growing problem:

  • there were nearly 700,000 reports of road defects and potholes on England’s roads in 2018-19
  • the number of potholes reported in England rose to 15,542 in 2018, an increase of 46% compared to the previous year
  • damaged roads were a factor in 102 reported cycling accidents in Britain in 2017, up by more than 18% since 2015

Has your car suffered damage as a result of cracks in the road? Here’s how you can get compensation if your car is damaged by a pothole.