Council clears 700 potholes a week

Northumberland County Council says it is working to clear 700 potholes a week on the county's roads.
Northumberland County Council says it is working to clear 700 potholes a week on the county's roads.

Hundreds of potholes are being cleared a week as council chiefs look to clear a growing backlog.

The News Post Leader reported last week how the current backlog stands at more than 6,000 potholes, but Northumberland County Council has said around 700 potholes a week are being cleared in the county.

Following a pledge last winter to clear the long-running backlog of potholes, teams of council staff successfully filled in the outstanding repairs of 12,213 potholes by the end of June 2014 – a figure which stood at more than 32,000 in May 2013.

On average around 700 potholes a week are currently being repaired as the rolling programme of work continues.

While the current backlog stands at around 6,000 potholes, there tends to be a spike in reporting during winter and at the current rate of repair should be cleared in the next four months.

Coun Ian Swithenbank, policy board member for streetcare and environment, said: “We said we would clear the backlog and were true to our word.

“With over 5,000kms of road to look after and varying weather conditions there will always be peaks and troughs in the cycle of repairs but we want to be open and transparent and show people our progress.

“We are currently carrying out more work on the county’s highways than we have seen for many years and once the weather improves we will be starting on a surface dressing programme for the roads, meaning highways will be smoother and repairs last longer.

“The Government funding over the next few years will provide a welcome boost to the roads budget in 2015/16.”

Visit www.northumberland.gov.uk/potholes for full details.