NEWS | RAC pothole-related breakdowns leap during last three months of 2022
RAC patrols attended nearly a quarter (23%) more mishaps likely to be caused by potholes in the final three months of 2022 compared to the previous three months, new RAC figures made national on the occasion of tonight’s show pothole day were published.
From October to the end of the year, the car service company’s breakdown workers had an average of 20 breakdowns a day – a total of more than 1,800 – due to defects such as damaged shock absorbers, broken chassis springs and warped wheels. This was an increase from 16 per day over the previous three months (1,462 in total) and was the highest number of pothole-related mishaps recorded in the fourth quarter of the year since 2019.
The risk of a plethora of potholes looming over the next few months is indeed very real now given the amount of rain that fell on either side of December’s sub-zero temperatures. These are the perfect conditions for potholes, as water will seep into cracks, which then expand as they freeze, causing the road surface to crumble.
Research for the RAC’s latest Report on Motoring found that a whopping 86% of drivers had to steer consciously to avoid potholes in the past year, a figure that rises to 90% in rural areas but falls to just 81% in urban areas Locations. Most motorists (55%) also rated pothole repairs in their area as “poor” or “very bad”.
Nicholas Lyes, Head of Road Policy at the RAC, said:
“The wet weather we experienced both before and after the coldest start to winter in 12 years in December is the perfect recipe for potholes to plague the roads. We fear that by spring motorists will be plagued by a plethora of potholes on the country’s roads, making driving uncomfortable and frustrating or, worse, could result in very expensive garage repair bills – the last thing on anyone’s mind would like to have costs – living crisis. It’s also important to remember that potholes are so much more than just a nuisance, they are a real road safety hazard, especially for cyclists as they pose a major risk to their personal safety.
“As many drivers will no doubt attest, there are too many instances where potholes have been poorly patched by clammy councilors who then return all too quickly. It’s frankly preposterous that when roads play such a vital role in people’s daily lives – and for transporting goods and businesses – that we as a country can’t seem to seem incapable of tackling such an age-old problem provide services are crucial.
“Councils are crying out for more funding to bring their roads up to a decent standard. With drivers still citing the persistently poor state of the roads as one of their biggest driving frustrations, they can only hope that 2023 is the year when the government finally rises, acknowledges Britain’s persistent pothole problem and finds a better way to solve it.”
Report a pothole on the RAC website.