More than 5,000 potholes reported in Cambridgeshire
A garage has placed traffic cones on the road to prevent drivers from wrecking their cars after a plague of huge potholes hit Cambridgeshire roads, leaving many people with blown tyres, cracked wheels and damaged suspension.
Cambridgeshire County Council admits there are currently more than 5,000 potholes in Cambridgeshire waiting to be filled after this winter’s freezing weather.
And garage owner Sean Manchett, from Manchetts in Burwell, has warned some of the potholes he saw were “massive” and would cause “terrible” injuries if struck by a motorcyclist.
He said: “We put up four cones in the village last weekend because outside of GP operations there were two very dangerous potholes along the Newmarket to Burwell road.
“They are absolutely cavernous and not only would they cause serious wheel damage, they would damage the suspension and steering if you hit them at any speed. You can tell by how deep the cone went into the pothole that it must be considerably deep and that would cause terrible damage if a motorcyclist hit it. That would be horrible.”
Sean says he’s seen “a significant increase” in people needing spare tires and recovery from cracked alloys and suspensions due to the potholes.
Burwell resident Lisa Waterfield Parnell said: “We were driving in the dark on the Ness Road in the village just outside the cemetery the day before Christmas Eve and we came across this almighty hole. The next day, Christmas Eve was a nightmare because I had to drive to my dad’s nursing home, but we didn’t have a wheel wrench to take my tire off to get it to a garage in time for closing. Finally it was settled on December 28th for the sum of £148.50. What a pain – but I think I have to absorb it like the rest of the village.”
Another stretch of road outside Cambridge has become notorious after 19 potholes appeared there in recent days, and there have been many reports of this on the County Council’s pothole reporting page.
Writing on Comberton Road in Barton, one person reported “several huge potholes that would cause serious damage”, adding: “A car pulled over to my side of the road to avoid them. Please fix it urgently as it is so dangerous.”
The council said: “We assess non-emergency motorway incidents within 10 working days and aim to resolve emergency motorway incidents as quickly as possible. If a bug is identified as a risk to the public, we always prioritize it. The time it takes to fix a pothole or bug varies by size, location and other external factors.”
The amount of time the municipality allows for pothole repairs depends on the type of road. On secondary roads, potholes up to 8 cm deep are not considered severe enough to be repaired.
If more than 8 cm deep, they will try to fix them in five days if they are classified as “significant risk to public safety”. If there is “a certain risk to public safety”, the waiting period is 21 days. Potholes on inner-city roads should be repaired between five and 21 days if they are deeper than 5 cm. However, if the depth is less than 5 cm, the period for a repair is 13 weeks.
A council spokesman said: “We know how important our roads are, so we are committed to continuing to prioritize regular inspections of our roads, bridges and footpaths to identify deficiencies and repair them as quickly as possible. Reactive repairs when failures occur are prioritized based on severity and risk to road users.
“Our dedicated road inspectors are working hard to keep this up, although we can’t always be everywhere, which is why we encourage the public to report potholes or road disruptions through our online tool. It’s easy to use and flags up bugs that haven’t been flagged yet. We’d rather have multiple reports of a bug than none at all.
“After the cold spell late last year, it takes time for the damage to cause a pothole in the road. We urge drivers to be vigilant over the next few weeks and report any defects to us.”
Visit bit.ly/3k7d8Gn to report a pothole.