West Sussex County Council increase spending to tackle pothole problem

Potholes on the A27  between Chichester and Portsmouth. Pic Steve Robards SR1515030  01-07-2015 SUS-150107-181601001

Potholes on the A27 between Chichester and Portsmouth. Pic Steve Robards SR1515030 01-07-2015 SUS-150107-181601001

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West Sussex County Council increased spending on temporary pothole repairs by 57 per cent last year - the most of any county in the UK.

Figures obtained by the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) via the Freedom of Information Act show how investment in the county’s roads improved in the financial year 2014-2015.

Potholes in Springfield Crescent, Horsham in 2013. Photo by Steve Cobb S13411205x

Potholes in Springfield Crescent, Horsham in 2013. Photo by Steve Cobb S13411205x

They reveal the county council took a firmer stance on potholes, spending £2.2m on repairs in 2014-15, compared to £1.4m the previous year.

The 57 per cent increase in spending is far greater than any other county during the same period of time, with second placed Nottinghamshire increasing their pothole budget by 28 per cent.

Many other councils spent less on filling potholes than in the previous year, according to the findings.

West Sussex also ranks fifth among counties for increasing funds spent on resurfacing roads in the same time.

The county council spent £27m on resurfacing in 2014-15, up 38 per cent from the £19.5m figure a year before.

Statistics obtained also reveal that compensation paid by WSCC to drivers whose vehicles had been damaged due to road surface defects nearly halved from 2013 to 2014.

Just £60,279 was paid out in 2014, compared to £103,698 the previous year.

A spokesperson for the council said: “West Sussex County Council secured extra funding to tackle potholes from the Department of Transport’s ‘Government Pothole Fund’ last year.

“We made a successful bid for a share of the money in June 2014.”

A spokesperson for the IAM said the results show councils across the country ‘have responded to criticisms about failing to make pothole repair and road maintenance a top priority’.

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