It can be costly to run a car, fuel, maintenance, road tax and an insurance policy are just some of the routine expenses that drivers need to cover. This means it’s particularly frustrating when something as sudden and preventable as a pot-hole wreaks havoc with your wheel axels, causing even more expense and effort to get it sorted.
An unfortunately-located pothole might not be avoidable for the driver, but it’s often an avoidable situation. There’s a simple process for reporting road damage, which in theory should mean that pothole numbers are kept low. The trouble is, not everyone knows how to do it, so, much like repairing a pot hole, allow us to fill you in…
Large holes in the road can damage tyres, wheels, suspension and even a car’s structure. In the very worst scenario, a pothole can even cause a collision to occur. Every year, UK drivers have to spend a whopping £2.8 billion repairing new and used cars thanks to these pesky road surface problems.
The good news is that if people use the system properly and report potholes as soon as they occur, the local authority then becomes liable for their repair. Any damage incurred by your vehicle as a result of a reported pothole should be compensated by the council responsible. You’ll need to apply for compensation, including a raft of evidence (photograph the damage, the pothole itself, get the street name and GPS coordinates, and even measure the pothole if you can – though obviously not on a motorway). Cyclists are also able to claim for damage to their bikes. Of course, if nobody has reported the pothole, the local authority doesn’t know of its existence and cannot be held accountable. In that situation you may be able to claim on your insurance (if it’s fully comp).
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Reporting potholes not only reduces their prevalence on the roads, but it also massively helps any driver who suffers as a result of one. But with potholes being a big problem in the motor trade, how exactly do you report them? Reporting a pothole is easy to do online but has a slightly different route depending on the location of the road damage. Visit the central government website for a full list of reporting channels throughout England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. There’s usually an online form which you need to complete with location information and photos or descriptions.
Depending on how severe the pothole is deemed to be, the timescale for repairs does vary, but the important thing is that it’s reported and that the council is aware of it. So, next time you have to avoid a crater in the road, just remember there’s an easy way to report it and get it dealt with, future road users are counting on you!