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'Authority on top of pothole crisis'

By Jonny Drury | News | Published:

A councillor responsible for transport has today insisted an authority is on top of the pothole crisis despite cyclists hitting out at the state of the counties roads.

The problem with potholes has been a problem right across the region for many months.

In Shropshire, a number of issues have been highlighted, with some villages even being cut out because of numerous holes in the road.

Highways cabinet member Steve Davenport has insisted the council is ahead of the problem and specialist machinery is being used.

He said: "The council is now on top of the problem with potholes.

"Driving around the county I can see that the problem is being dealt with and we are catching up with the problems.

"Plans have been in place before and we are now on top of the issue."

Cllr Davenport has also insisted that if people spot any other major issues, including potholes over a certain height then they should contact him immediately.

He added: "When potholes are over a certain height, about 25 mill they become emergencies and we deal with them straight away.

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"We have 5,500 kilometres of roads and we are getting around them.

"We have got new equipment taking on the work, we have a new machine that has come over from Ireland, which is a self drive machine.

"We are continuing to tackle the problem and we are getting on top of the issue."

Cllr Davenport's comments come after the RAC claimed councils are 'losing the battle' against potholes as related vehicle breakdowns between April and June reached a three-year high.

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They were also in contrasts to the views of some cyclists.

Cyclists at the Newport Nocturne event on Saturday claimed that roads are getting worse than ever, with one saying he feared potholes could cause a fatality if things aren't sorted soon.

Martin Southerton, from Donnington, said: “The roads are a nightmare. The main roads are bad but the B roads are okay.

“I feel for motorcyclists more, and I think it is only a matter of time before we see a fatality. Obviously we want to see something done, however it costs money and where does that money come from.

“If we want them fixed, tax goes up and then people complain that the tax comes up. Where I ride there is one that is about four feet deep, it is a nightmare.”

A councillor Tim Nelson of Newport Cycling Club said: “It isn’t just a problem here, it is national. Cars can go over them but cyclists have to swerve and it creates a danger of going into traffic.

“What I would say is to appeal to cyclists to watch out, be careful.

”If there are with a cycling group, warn others when they are coming up and to be aware of traffic when pulling out to avoid one.”

The 32 successful claims has led to council paying out £6,164.38 in compensation. Individual requests for repairs among the 422 requests ranged from £38.40, to as much as £9,780.

Jonny Drury

By Jonny Drury
@JonnyDrury_Star

Senior reporter covering Oswestry and Mid Wales.

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