In Brief

Britain’s broken roads cost drivers £1m a month

Insurance claims for pothole-related damage have tripled

Vehicle repair bills caused by Britain’s pothole “epidemic” are costing drivers and insurance firms at least £1m per month, a study has found.

Research carried out by the AA reveals that insurance claims for pothole-related vehicle faults have tripled over the first four months of this year compared to the same period last year.

According to the motoring association’s study, there have already been 4,200 claims for damage caused by broken road surfaces this year. This compares to an estimated 3,500 for the whole of last year.

Average repair bills for faults caused by potholes come in at around £1,000, The Daily Telegraph reports, bringing this year’s total to an estimated £4.2m. 

Some of the “pothole woes” encountered by drivers include a crater so deep a car was unable to drive out of it, The Independent says. Another driver came across a pothole “lurking under a puddle,” which broke the car’s steering. 

The AA’s insurance chief, Janet Connor, has described Britain’s broken roads as “nothing short of a national disgrace.”

“This year we’re seeing a growing number of pothole claims described as ‘car severely damaged and undriveable,’ which didn't happen at all last year,” she said.

Drivers are being urged to flag potholes to the highway authority responsible for the damaged piece of road, says Sky News. They are also being urged to share images of the craters on social media.

The AA is also calling for the Government to “ring-fence” 2p per litre of current fuel duty in order to create a £1bn pothole fund for councils, the news site says.

The Department for Transport pledged £100m into pothole relief in March, says Auto Express, but experts believe councils are facing a £556m shortfall in road repair funding every year.

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