North Lanarkshire pothole repair times are slower than South Lanarkshire

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RAC Foundation research shows North Lanarkshire Council is slower at repairing potholes than neighbouring South Lanarkshire.

In a response to research carried out by the charity, North Lanarkshire said it had a target to fill the most severe potholes within 90 minutes, whereas South Lanarkshire was one of five UK local authorities that aims to effect repairs “immediately”.

At the less severe end of the scale, minor road defects in North Lanarkshire will be carried out within 55 days versus one week in South Lanarkshire.

However, North Lanarkshire is still significantly quicker than many UK councils at performing repairs. Coventry is the worst performer, as its target for fixing the most severe problems is five days.

The study also found that authorities are increasingly adopting the ‘risk-based’ approach to fixing road defects.

This considers other factors, such as road type and traffic patterns rather than just the size of the pothole when deciding repair priorities.

However, almost all authorities still set minimum sizes before assessing potholes and the minimum size before requiring action differs widely between local authorities.

Steve Gooding, director of the RAC Foundation, said: “It is good to see that the vast majority of local highway authorities are adopting the best practice ‘risk-based’ approach recommended by the UK Roads Liaison Group, which is putting the risk to road users front and centre alongside the potential for a defect to develop into a bigger structural problem.

“The total number of potholes being filled in might still be limited by a shortage of funding, but this approach at least means those that are most dangerous are fixed first.”

The UK Roads Liaison Group recommends primary, secondary and main distributor roads are inspected monthly; link roads once a quarter; and local roads once a year.

In addition to potholes, inspections also look out for damaged or missing manhole covers and drain grates, and damage to the edge of the carriageway.