You’ll now get £180 less in pothole compensation as councils cut payouts

You’ll now get £180 less in pothole compensation as councils cut payouts
You’ll now get £180 less in pothole compensation as councils cut payouts

British drivers are now receiving around £180 less in compensation if their car is damaged by a pothole compared with five years ago.

A Freedom of Information request to councils around the country revealed that the average payout for pothole-related damage has fallen to £276 – 40 per cent less than five year ago.

The drop in compensation comes at the same time as a sharp rise in the number of successful claims against local authorities.

Read more: How to claim for pothole damage

The research by car buying website carwow found that the number of claims against councils almost doubled between 2015/16 and 2017/18 to 48,767, with 54 per cent of those being upheld.

Welsh drivers were worst off, with an average payout of just £144 per claim in 2017/18. In Scotland drivers received £205 towards repairing their cars and in England the average payout was £298.

National emergency

The value of damages claims has fallen from more than £450 five years ago to less than £300 now. Picture: Shutterstock

The RAC estimates that the number of potholes on British roads has soared by 33 per cent in two years and the AA has called the state of the country’s roads a ‘national emergency’.

Andrew Hooks, chief operating officer of carwow, says: ‘Driver safety is being compromised by the sheer number of potholes on British roads. The damage that these hazards do to cars can be severe, yet compensation payments are dropping.

‘This makes no sense and motorists are angry. Government money has been set aside to deal with the pothole plague – if councils aren’t filling them or compensating drivers, we are justified in asking where this cash is going?’

Last year Chancellor Philip Hammond announced an extra £420 million of funding for councils to tackle potholes and in January Transport Secretary said the Government would invest £23m in future-proofing roads, including trialling pothole-resistant plastic road surfaces.

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