32,000 defects reported on Essex’s roads

THE true state of Essex’s roads has been revealed after nearly 32,000 road defects including potholes were reported in just 12 months.

Essex County Council had a total of 31,691 lumps, bumps, holes and other defects reported on the road network according to statistics released under the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act.

Engineers treated 22,441 of those defects while work on 9,250 remains outstanding.

The council spent £8,535,893 in 2012/13 on patching up and repairing damage on the roads including potholes.

An Essex Highways engineer said: “We maintain one of the largest road networks in the country with 8,500 miles of roads and footpaths.

“We are committed to maintaining and enhancing the road network and as part of this we carry out repairs as quickly as possible with out highways teams focused on fixing potholes, especially safety critical defects that have been reported to us.

“We continue to urge residents to report road defects, such as potholes, using the reporting tool on the Essex County Council website which will help us to repair road defects as quickly and efficiently as possible.”

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Motorists whose vehicles were damaged by potholes on Essex roads made 2,087 compensation claims between April 1, 2012, and March 31, 2013.

A total of 1,472 of the claims are still open and Essex County Council has so far paid out £25,361.76 for damages and third party costs.

The engineer added: “In regards to compensation to those claiming for pothole damage to their vehicles, all compensation claims received by Essex County Council are investigated fully and costs are only paid if the council feels they are liable as the highways authority.”