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Call for pothole repair funding rethink

Date: 01 July 2019   |   Author: Sean Keywood

The government should make money available to mend UK road surfaces, according to MPs.

The Transport Select Committee has issued a report saying that the current approach to financing road maintenance is not fit for purpose. 

It says that the Department for Transport should propose a front-loaded, long-term funding settlement to the Treasury as part of its forthcoming spending review.

The report states: "Potholes are a headache for everyone and a severe risk for many. 

"A deteriorating local road network undermines local economic performance and results in direct costs to taxpayers, either through rising costs of deferred work or through a mend-and-make-do approach that does not represent good value for money in the long-term. 

"It also damages vehicles and causes injuries to passengers, particularly those with existing medical conditions."

The report has been welcomed by road safety charity IAM Roadsmart, which says a survey it conducted found nearly half of respondents had experienced pothole-related damage to their vehicle, and around 90% had seen a deterioration in the surfaces of roads they used. 

IAM Roadsmart spokesman Rodney Kumar said: "While we understand that local government funding has been cut, the effect of pothole damage to beleaguered British motorists is huge. 

"It costs them a fortune, stops them getting to work and has a detrimental effect on the economy. 

"It really is time to ring-fence funds for tackling this pothole epidemic, and get the problem sorted once and for all."