The quality of local roads across the UK is stated as main concern among Britain’s drivers, according to the RAC Report on Motoring 2015, as published by Fleet News.
10% of motorists cited the condition of local roads as their major concern, while a further 20% said the issue is one of their top four concerns.
50% of the 1,555 motorists surveyed believe the condition of roads in their area has even deteriorated in the past 12 months and only 10% suggest things have improved.
99% of the people who said the roads are worse, attribute the deterioration down to potholes and general damage to the road surface, although litter is also a source of annoyance for a quarter of people, as is poor maintenance of verges for 21%.
The problem, however, appears unlikely to be overcome in the foreseeable future – impacting business, the local economy and road users’ lives – as the Government has itself estimated the cost of bringing local roads in England alone back to a state that is fit for purpose to be up to £8.6bn.
This is despite only allocating £6bn purely to maintain and improve local roads up until 2021. However, other estimates from the Asphalt Industry Alliance (AIA), put the cost of returning English and Welsh local roads to a ‘reasonable condition’ to be far greater at £12.16bn (England £11.5bn).
RAC chief engineer RAC David Bizley said:
“Motorists clearly want the Government to provide sufficient funding to ensure local roads are maintained properly, but while any central government money given to local authorities for roads must be spent on roads, we also need councils to spend more of their own funds on repairing and replacing road surfaces.
“Currently, this is a challenge as they are under specific legal obligation to provide minimum standards in education and social services whereas their obligations to maintain roads are far less prescriptive.
Quality of roads is a major concern for many fleet managers who are trying to manage insurance claims that may arise, simply from the state of the roads.