IAM RoadSmart says the pothole situation on UK roads has now become ‘much more than just irritating’, and is calling on the Government to take the issue ‘seriously’.
The strong words from the road safety charity follow the publication of a new survey, in which 75% of motorists perceive potholes to be a bigger issue for road users than they were three years ago.
This figure was higher than for other issues including driver distraction (68%) and traffic congestion (65%).
IAM RoadSmart’s annual Safety Culture Report, which tracks drivers’ changing attitudes to key road safety issues over time, also found that 89% of respondents had been ‘affected by potholes’ over the last year.
Meanwhile, just over one in three (31%) had changed their route to avoid a pothole – with more than half (54%) having had to steer away or brake hard to avoid impact and damage.
Neil Greig, IAM RoadSmart director of policy and research, said: “The pothole situation on UK roads has now become much more than just irritating, it’s a significant threat to personal safety.
“We simply can’t have vehicles swerving into oncoming traffic or slamming on their brakes without warning to avoid them. Deteriorating roads also put pedestrians and cyclists at greater risk.
“It is clearly a sign of the times when motorists perceive potholes to be a bigger growing concern to them than drink driving and texting.
“And while the statistics show that the devastating impacts of using a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol or using a mobile phone when driving still remain, it does highlight that it is time for the Government to take potholes seriously and fix the UK’s road network.”