More than one million potholes reported to councils last year, survey shows

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More than one million potholes were reported to councils last year, according to new research.

A study for insurance firm Confused.com also revealed that councils paid £3.1 million in compensation to drivers whose vehicles were damaged by poor road surfaces in 2016.

Local authorities spent an additional £104 million repairing potholes.

The figures were obtained following Freedom of Information requests to 412 local authorities.

Confused.com calculated that the UK's potholes have a total depth of more than 24 miles, which is almost four times deeper than the Pacific Ocean.

A survey of 2,000 motorists found that one in three (33%) have suffered damage to their vehicles due to poor road surfaces, including tyres and suspension problems.

Wiltshire Council made the biggest pay-outs to pothole victims at £508,000 last year.

The cost of repair varies between areas, with Westminster City Council forking out the most per pothole at £2,400.

Confused.com motoring editor Amanda Stretton said: "Scrolling to depths of 40km (25 miles) really puts the UK's pothole problem into perspective.

"They are a major bugbear among drivers, not least because of the damage they do to our vehicles - around £3.1 million worth of damage.

"If drivers experience a bump in the road, they should report it to their local council as soon as possible before the problem gets any worse.

"The cost of motoring alone is getting more and more expensive and damage repairs is a big contributor to this, as car parts increase in price as well."

The annual road maintenance survey by the Ashphalt Industry Alliance found that local authorities in England and Wales need more than £12 billion of funding to bring the road network up to scratch.

This is several times more than councils' entire annual revenue spending on highways and transport, which was £4.4 billion in England last year.

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