Pothole damage tops fleet's complaints list
16 June 2016
Author: Daniel Puddicombe
Damage to vehicles from hitting potholes and sitting in traffic are the top business bugbears, new research has revealed.
According to RAC Business, just under half (46%) of the 500 UK firms surveyed listed pothole damage as their main concern, while 43% said congestion on their local roads created problems.
Meanwhile, one in five (20%) said they are worried about a possible economic slowdown impacting their operation, while 19% cited poor reliability of company vehicles as an issue, and 17% reported that congestion charges and low emission zones are a worry.
The RAC claimed the nation's potholed roles has led to a steady increase in the number of call-outs to business customers' vehicles suffering damage due to neglected road surfaces over the last 15 years.
The breakdown firm claimed it has seen a 16% increase in callouts relating to pothole damage from 1249 in 2014 to 1455 in 2015 among fleet customers.
"Potholes can be a real headache, not just for drivers, but for the business owners that have to foot the bill for the repairs. The time spent off the road due to the damage caused by potholes can amount to hundreds of pounds a day in lost productivity," said Jenny Powley, sales director for corporate business at RAC Business. "It's concerning to see the number of pothole-related breakdowns rising at a time when the Government has committed to investing in maintenance and improving road infrastructure."
"Despite the fact that local authorities increased their spending in 2015 to try to catch up with some of the road maintenance and repair backlog, this data suggests that there is still some way to go," she added. "The last couple of winters haven't seen particularly freezing temperatures, which can be a major cause of potholes. But the reality is due to the limited resources available it seems it's not been possible to take advantage of that respite and keep up with the demand."