Potholes more than twice as likely to kill your car than over a decade ago

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There are three certainties in the life of a motorist: fuel stops, road tax and potholes. It’s that last one that has hit the headlines again after new research showed drivers are more than twice as likely to break down due to hitting a pothole than 12 years ago.

Risk of pothole-related breakdowns doubles 3

Potholes tend to cause more fuss than usual after a spate of snow, so perhaps this is the result of the extreme winter that crippled certain parts of the UK with heavy snow as late as March this year.

Figures from the RAC suggest that motorists are more than two and a half times as likely to suffer a pothole breakdown in 2018 than they were in 2006. In the last year, the RAC dealt with 14,220 breakdowns likely to have been caused by potholes, representing 1.5 per cent of all its call-outs over this period.

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Potholes became particularly troublesome in the first quarter of 2010 when motorists were three and a half times more likely to break down due to hitting a pothole, compared to 2006.

The RAC’s latest Report on Motoring research found the state of local roads to be the most concerning issue amongst motorists, up from 33 per cent in 2017 to 42 per cent in 2018. Close to one in five drivers cite this as their number-one concern, compared to one in ten in 2017.

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Two-thirds of the 1,808 drivers surveyed for the annual research believe the condition of local roads has deteriorated in the last 12 months, up from 51 per cent in 2017.

RAC chief engineer David Bizley said recent storms and extreme weather can’t be blamed for the “substandard” condition of many local roads.

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He called for the government to back up its extra £100 million of road repairs with a ten-year plan of ring-fenced funding that will “eliminate the backlog of preventative maintenance that will stop the plague of potholes appearing every time there is bad weather”.

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Have you been the victim of a pothole-related breakdown? Are you sick of the state of Britain’s roads? Let us know down in the comments…

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