Hampshire County Council has fixed an extra 120,000 potholes in the last financial year – an average of 10,000 potholes each month – thanks to securing extra money from Government for being one of the best in looking after roads.
The County Council has delivered an extensive programme of road repairs to tackle the problem of roads damaged by flooding following the harsh winter of 2013/14.
As a Council able to demonstrate good practice with a commitment to innovation, Hampshire was awarded one of the highest amounts in the south east of England, a total of £17.5 million from the Flood Recovery and Pothole Repair Funds to repair potholes, carriageways and bridges.
Hampshire County Council’s Executive Member for Economy, Transport and Environment, Councillor Seán Woodward, said: “Hampshire County Council has shown it is one of the leading areas in the country in its determination to beat potholes, and received substantial government funding as a result. This money has been a great help in reducing potholes but there is always more work to be done.
“We are always looking at effective ways of using our resources and innovative ways of working to ensure Hampshire’s roads are repaired and improved as efficiently as possible, making us more prepared for whatever the weather brings in the future.”
£6million of the £17.5 million is solely dedicated to repairs to potholes, junctions, roadside edges, joints and large patching. This is on top of the annual highways maintenance budget of £56m which is used to look after Hampshire’s 5,280 miles of roads, including pavements, verges, bridges and streetlights.
A staggering 57,000 potholes alone were fixed during the summer of 2014 by carrying out an extensive programme of jet-patching and local small element patching. This was followed by a programme of larger scale pothole repairs at junctions, roadside edges and joint repairs bringing the total up to 120,000 repairs.
Throughout 2013/14 additional work was also undertaken in flood prone areas such as checking, clearing and repairing drains. Around 80,000 gullies were cleansed by last Autumn ready for winter, and nearly 140 maintenance and improvement schemes completed.
Working with the County Council’s term highways maintenance contractor, Amey, extra resources and machinery were brought into Hampshire to ensure the repairs could be carried out as quickly as possible with minimal disruption.
David Ogden, Account Director at Amey, added: “We have worked closely with our employees and supply chain over the past year to trial new techniques and ways of working to maximise the number of potholes repaired. This has included deploying additional resources, introducing new products and using technology to deliver the Council’s extensive road repair programme more efficiently. Due to the success of the trials, some of these techniques will continue to be used in the future.”