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New AA research highlights the UK’s pothole problem

Driving can be tough no matter where you are. It’s a multi-tasking juggernaut of controlling your vehicle, anticipating what others might be doing and obeying the rules of the road. It’s a pity that the road itself can present certain challenges you might not have factored in. 

According to a joint-poll carried out by The AA and Populus, around a third of UK drivers have experienced issues with their car caused by potholes in the last two years. Be it on two wheels or four, they’ve been known to cause damage to a vehicle’s tyres, tracking and bodywork, and sometimes be at fault for road collisions.

While half of UK road users think more money should be spent on fixing faulty streets and motorways, in Northern Ireland for example, only a quarter of drivers would report the damage suffered to their cars. In Scotland however, where pothole damage is most likely to happen, 37% of motorists would make a claim.

The survey found that older drivers made less claims for damage caused by potholes. In real numbers, it worked out to be only 25% amongst those over the age of 65. That could suggest that more experienced road users have a better knack at spotting and avoiding potholes.

Younger motorists, specifically drivers aged between 18 and 24 had a different struggle when dealing with potholes. With nearly 50% of new and less skilled drivers reporting vehicle damage caused by potholes, it seems how long you’ve been driving is a factor when tackling the issue.

The survey also found that just over half of people who had seen a pothole in their local area would report it, while nationwide, only 20% of motorists would do the same.

In contrast 40% claimed they would report a pothole if they knew how to go about it.

In a separate survey taken with AA members, one-in-five people said they would volunteer to fill dangerous potholes if their local council would allow it.

The AA also included information on how to report a pothole:

● Make a note of the specific location of the pothole, i.e. not just the name of the road, but how far up it is based on a house number, or a nearby landmark.

● Add the details. Some local authorities have interactive maps, where you can drop a pin to locate the pothole. Others have a contact form asking for more details.

● Find contact details for your council. You can go straight to their website, or pop the relevant postcode into the government’s ‘Report a Pothole’ page.

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