CAR smashes caused by pesky potholes have soared as millions of Brits got back behind the wheel after months of rolling lockdowns.
Drivers are facing more misery than ever before as pothole-related-breakdowns hit a three year high, new figures show.
On average a staggering 27 cars are breaking down every single day thanks to damp weather wreaking havoc on Britain’s awful roads.
More than 10,000 breakdowns are caused every year, the RAC revealed today to mark National Pothole Day.
The blight of potholes caused hundreds of broken suspension springs, distorted wheels and damaged shock absorbers last year – up 10 per cent from two years previously.
Potholes are usually caused during the colder, wetter winter months when water gets into cracks in the road, which freezes at low temperatures and causes more damage.
According to the RAC’s pothole index, Brits are now one and a half times more likely to break down after hitting a pothole today than they were six years ago.
Research for the RAC Report on Motoring shows that the condition and maintenance of local roads is by far drivers’ top motoring related concern.
Nearly half of respondents (46 per cent) last year said the quality of local roads was a problem, up from 38 per cent a year before.
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They called on ministers to give local councils the funding they need to get the nation’s roads patched up – saying one-off pots of money wasn’t enough and it must be ring-fenced cash.
The RAC’s head of roads policy, Nicholas Lyes, said of the news: “Potholed roads are a menace, not a mere annoyance – they can cause thousands of pounds of unnecessary damage to drivers’ vehicles, make using our roads uncomfortable and can be a serious road safety hazard for anyone on two wheels.
“It is almost entirely avoidable if roads were maintained properly.
“With drivers contributing so much in terms of tax to the Government the very least they deserve are roads that are fit-for-purpose.”
Greater and consistent long-term investment in local road maintenance is needed so councils can embark on the widespread improvement of our roads that is desperately needed
LGA transport spokesman David Renard
The Local Government Association found that annual funding for more than 9.5 million pothole repairs has been removed from council budgets in England.
LGA transport spokesman David Renard said: “Greater and consistent long-term investment in local road maintenance is needed so councils can embark on the widespread improvement of our roads that is desperately needed.”
Experts predict that around £10billion needs to be spent over a decade to bring all pot-hole plagued roads back up to scratch.
A DfT spokesperson said: “The Government is providing over £5 billion of investment over this parliament for highways maintenance to local highways authorities across England.
“This is enough to fill millions of potholes a year, repair dozens of bridges, and resurface roads up and down the country.”