Fife worst in Scotland for potholes

Fife had the most potholes in Scotland over a four year period, according to motoring body the AA.

And the figures placed it as the fifth highest council area in the UK for potholes on local roads between April 2018 and June 2021.

The AA asked 51 councils across the UK about their response to the ‘growing pothole crisis’.

The figures revealed during that period there were 57,051 reported potholes in Fife.

Figures revealed by the AA show Fife is the worst council area in Scotland for potholes.

Northumberland came out on top as the pothole capital of the UK with 180,000 reported.

Over 1.5 million potholes were reported across the country, but the AA says the actual number is likely to be much higher as the figure does not include pothole on motorways and major roads, and many go unreported.

Glasgow had the second highest number reported in Scotland with 38,100.

Jack Cousens, head of roads policy at the AA, said: “Potholes are a frustration to all drivers and are a blight on our roads.

“While they are annoying for car drivers, potholes can be fatal to those on two wheels.

"As the government seeks to encourage more active travel, walking out to a moon-like surface won’t install confidence to would-be cyclists.

“For too long, both central and local governments blame each other for the lack of funding in maintaining our road surfaces. It’s time both got round the table and heavily invested in smoother, safer streets.”

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John Mitchell, senior manager for Fife Council, said: “We have over 2500km of Fife’s roads to maintain in a safe condition.

"Our teams work on a priority basis, concentrating on high risk areas first."The backlog of repairs is coming down across Fife and we are continuing with our other planned patching work and carriageway re-surfacing plans."

Councillor Altany Craik, the council’s spokesman for roads, added: “This is a top priority for us.

"We understand the frustrations of Fifers as we work hard to tackle the issue of potholes on our roads.

"Sadly we are not where we would like to be and progress hasn't been as fast as we would like.

"We're investing more money over the next year to bring the backlog of repairs down and get our roads up to an acceptable standard."

The information gathered by the AA through Freedom of Information requests, also showed how many claims councils had received for pothole damage and how many of these had been compensated.

Across the 51 councils a total of 43,947 pothole damage claims were made, but only 30 per cent of claims were compensated during the same period.

In Fife there had been 1160 claims made for vehicle damage caused by potholes over the four year period, with just 122 being compensated.

Compensation is only available for potholes where it was reported and not fixed within the council’s set timescales, or they decided it could be repaired at a later date.

Glasgow experienced the greatest volume of pothole damage claims from April 2018 to June 2021, but has compensated just over three per cent.