They’re the bane of every motorist’s life, and now new RAC figures confirm just what a menace potholes are. According to the motoring organisation, breakdowns caused by damage from potholes rose a massive 63% in the first three months of 2017, meaning they’re dealing with 72 pothole-related call outs a day, at a cost in repairs to the motorist of an average £110.
Poor road surfaces lead to increased breakdowns
Between January and March, the RAC were called out to attend 6,500 breakdowns that could be attributed to poor road surfaces. These are the likely cause of damage including damaged shock absorbers, broken suspensions and distorted wheel rims. Figures for pothole-related breakdowns were only surpassed in 2015, when the RAC were called out to 6,900 incidents. However, the floods and frosts of the first quarter of 2015 were significant contributory factors.
Pothole related breakdowns on the rise
The RAC first began their pothole analysis in 2006, and 2017 has seen by far the highest number of pothole related callouts in that period. In fact, damage caused by potholes accounted for 2.7% of all RAC callouts in the first quarter of the year.
The apparent deterioration of the roads in a comparatively mild and dry winter is some cause for concern, with the number of road surface related breakdowns climbing sharply from the 4,026 recorded in the same period in 2016.
Mild weather disguises the bigger picture
2017’s unusually mild winter may be disguising the bigger picture, however. The RAC has attended far fewer classic ‘cold winter’ breakdowns, usually caused by a flat car battery. Cold weather slows the chemical reaction inside the battery so it makes sense to check the battery for corrosion and signs of wear, and replace if necessary from a trusted supplier like http://www.grovesbatteries.co.uk/.
Pothole index tells story of UK roads
The RAC pothole index reveals a worrying picture about the state of British roads, which although improving, are still well short of their peak a decade ago and are claimed to be at crisis point. The RAC blames insufficient preventative maintenance, particularly resurfacing. In a recent poll, one-fifth of motorists said they’d fill in a pothole themselves if it would help to fix the problem.