Blackpool bucking pothole trends to be one of the best in Britain
Motorists all over Lancashire and Britain are still being driven potty by potholes– but not in Blackpool, it seems. New figures have revealed many local authorities are still struggling to keep up with the pothole scourge, including Lancashire County Council, which covers Fylde and Wyre.
Lancashire averaged 6.5 potholes per kilometre of road, with Blackpool one of the best in Britain with just 2.31. County Hall disputes the figures, which were compiled by insurance provider The Insurance Emporium. Insurance Emporium said almost a million potholes have been recorded by local authorities on Britain’s roads each year since 2015, with 1,088,965 potholes being reported in 2016 alone. Blackpool had just 1,048 potholes on its 452km network, averaging 2.31 per km, making it the 10th lowest overall.
Coun Fred Jackson, the cabinet member for highways, said: “Blackpool Council has significantly improved its approach and success in tackling potholes.
“A few years ago, we undertook an ambitious four-year programme of carriageway and footway improvements. “This involved developing a new technological way of recording, managing and reporting highway conditions and identifying the treatment that they needed. Project 30 launched in 2011 saw 40 miles of carriageway and footway repaired to reduce the number of potholes and tripping hazards. “The results have been that the condition of highways has been radically uplifted and there has been significant reduction in the number of highway insurance claims from members of the public from £1.8m paid out per annum to under £100,0000 by 2017/18.”
Lancashire County Council records ‘defects’ rather than ‘potholes’, so stats also include cracked or missing flagstones.
A spokesman for Lancashire County Council said: “We put an extra £5m into the budget for road maintenance this financial year on top of the allocation received from government, which has allowed our highways teams to put the roads back in good condition following last year’s wetter than average winter.” Th e data was obtained following a Freedom of Information request to 205 local authorities, 175 of whom responded.