Council pays out £10,000 in two years for pothole damage
FIFE COUNCIL paid out more than £10,000 in compensation for pothole damage to vehicles over the past two years.
Since 2010 a total of 454 claims have been made to the local authority resulting in compensation payments of £10,720.
The Press revealed in April last year that damage claims had almost quadrupled between 2006 and 2011 as car owners bore the brunt of the poor state of Fife's roads.
Claims will only be paid if the council is deemed to be negligent, that is, if the council has not adhered to road policies and processes that are in place.
A Freedom of Information request by Britannia Rescue found local authorities across the UK had paid out £4.8 million in compensation to motorists over the past two years.
Since 2010 more than 54,000 compensation claims have been made for damage caused by neglected roads and potholes.
According to the data the average repair bill is £132 with some claims as high as £3000.
The average cost of repairing a pothole is around £50, meaning the amount paid out by councils in compensation could have been used to repair more than 96,000 potholes.
Britannia Rescue managing director Peter Horton said, "The past two harsh winters caused significant damage to the UK's roads, which has not been fully repaired yet.
"Cuts in road maintenance funding mean that local authorities face very difficult choices on the roads they prioritise for repair.
"Motorists should protect themselves by keeping an eye out for potholes and keeping speeds down - particularly in wet weather when holes may be filled by rain."
Fife Council audit and risk management team leader Avril Sweeney said, "The council has a set procedure for dealing with claims and applies this consistently to ensure fairness.
"However, as the circumstances of individual claims differ each claim is assessed on its own merits with the information that is available."
Anyone who spots a pothole is urged to report it at www.fifedirect.org.uk/potholes, although emergencies such as missing manhole covers or large holes in roads or pavements should be reported by phone on 08451 550011.
Have your say. Post a comment on this article.
Sep 8, 09:40