RAC labels pothole breakdown figures as ‘very worrying’

11.36 | 29 November 2021 |

Image: RAC

The RAC has expressed concern that ‘little progress’ has been made to improve road surfaces for drivers over the last 12 months.

New figures published by the breakdown organisation show between June and September 2021, its patrols attended 1,810 pothole related breakdowns.

This comprises problems such as broken suspension springs, distorted wheels and damaged shock absorbers.

The Q3 2021 figure represents 1.2% of all its call-outs over the three-month period, representing the largest proportion in any third quarter since 2006.

In terms of pure numbers, it is however slightly lower than Q3 2020, when the figure stood at 1,871.

Meanwhile, 46% of respondents to a survey carried out as part of the RAC’s 2021 Report on Motoring, say that the state of local roads is one of their four biggest motoring-related concerns, up from 38% 12 months ago. 

In addition, over half (58%) of respondents believe local road conditions where they live have deteriorated over the past year.

Nicholas Lyes, RAC head of roads policy, said: “With Government data showing weekday car traffic is still not quite back to pre-pandemic levels, it’s very worrying that our patrols are still attending a higher proportion of pothole-related call-outs in relation to all the breakdowns they go out to.

“While it’s welcome that the sheer number of pothole breakdowns is not as high as we’ve seen in previous years, we see worrying signs in our data that implies little progress has been made in the last 12 months in improving road surfaces for drivers. 

“Traditionally, the spring and summer months give authorities a chance to repair and improve roads, but unfortunately it seems many roads remain in a perilous state. We fear we’re only a bad winter away from seeing a plague of potholes which authorities will struggle to repair.”



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