Pothole compensation claims surge

Pothole compensation claims surge

Local authorities in Somerset and other flood-hit areas are facing an increasing number of remuneration claims over potholes, a new survey has found.

Research by campaign website Potholes.co.uk shows that more and more drivers want compensation for damage to wheels or car axles which they say was caused by potholes occurring on saturated roads.

Somerset, which was among the worst-hit regions, saw claims go up by 750% between November/December and January/February, from 24 to 204.

The number of claims received by Surrey County Council rose by 353%, with the council admitting that the figures will get worse as it still has to deal with a backlog of claims.

RAC spokesman Simon Williams said: "Sadly, despite paying more than £45bn to the Government in motoring taxation every year drivers are suffering unprecedented levels of damage to their vehicles.

"This is an expensive inconvenience that motorists should not have to put up with. Potholes are no doubt a contributory factor in many accidents, as well as causing thousands of pounds of damage to vehicles leading to insurance claims and council compensation claims. They need to be fixed permanently so they are no longer a hazard and burden to road users."

Potholes.co.uk research shows that £730 million worth of damage is created in the UK due to potholes each year, with the figure expected to rise.

The campaign group has suggested a design for temporary signage, which it says could be used to warn drivers about potholes waiting ahead.

Copyright Press Association 2014