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Lack of long-term council road funding will see pothole crisis continue, insist IAM

By Kyle Linsay
Thursday, August 29, 2013 - 14:00

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CRISIS: Long-term funding essential, claim IAM

Councils must commit long-term funding to banish the UK’s pothole crisis, the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) have insisted.

The IAM recently surveyed local highway authorities to chart progress on implementing the key recommendations for the Pothole Review, twelve months on.

Results show that councils are adopting new policies and are being much more open about how and when they will fill in potholes.

Just under half (47%) of councils said they had published a report detailing their repair policy, with 85% claiming they have clear definitions of what a pothole actually looks like.

Meanwhile, 77% of authorities publish clear information on their response time for repairs, with 57% adopting innovative communication channels to make it easier to report a pothole.

The Pothole Review has led to significant changes in the way that councils repair roads.

More than half (59%) of councils said that now they adopt a ‘prevention is better than cure’ approach, with 71% claiming permanent repairs are their first choice when dealing with damaged roads.

Simon Best, Chief Executive of the IAM, said: “It’s probably too early to say that the Pothole Review has been a total success, but the early indications are mostly positive.

“Communication with drivers and riders has improved and permanent repairs are now being used in place of constant patching.

“The building blocks are in place but the fact that complaints still seem to be rising means they have a real challenge on their hands.

“At least in future that challenge and their response will be quantified and public and we will be watching for signs of real progress on the street.

“The IAM recognise that it will take time to deliver the quality of roads we want but the lack of long-term budgets in many councils is a real worry.

“We may now know what constitutes a pothole but without consistent funding many will still go unrepaired storing up even more long term damage for the future.”

Image courtesy of amandabhslater, with thanks.

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