Roads riddled with holes and it could get worse

The recent snow and ice might have subsided, but the after effects of potholes are still causing havoc for motorists.

There has been a noticeable increase in potholes across the town since the cold snap and with more icy conditions forecast for the end of the week, Eastbourne could see more in the coming weeks. East Sussex County Council is taking a pro-active approach and encouraging people to let them know about the worst ones on the town’s roads.

Eastbourne Borough Councillor Patrick Warner has been making a note of some of the biggest offenders and is working with county council highways officers to help combat the problem. He has taken his ‘pothole patrol’ to Twitter and this weekend he tweeted about a particularly large hole in the road on Marine Parade, opposite the Cumberland Hotel, (pictured).

Cllr Warner said, “East Sussex County Council invest millions of pounds in maintaining our highways each year and following the last few harsh winters we have experienced, Council officers have reviewed their processes to speed up repairs and reduce inevitable damage to cars and improve safety for all road users.

“Changes include an online reporting system, enabling residents to pinpoint exact locations on a map and the introduction of Highway Stewards who inspect the condition of Highways and help prioritise repairs dependant on the size of the holes and the volume of traffic that might come into contact with them.”

Cllr Carl Maynard, lead member for transport and environment, said, “Over the last two years, we’ve resurfaced over 200km or 124 miles of roads in East Sussex. That’s equivalent to resurfacing a road all the way from Lewes to Bristol.

“This year alone we’ve spent £19.5m on road resurfacing. But even with this level of investment we will still get additional problems occurring when severe weather hits us.

“We’re sending extra work gangs out to repair the most serious potholes as soon as they are reported. We have to prioritise our work - so the largest holes on the busiest routes will be at the top of our list.”

Cllr Warner said he agrees the county council is taking swift action but says he still has concerns.

He said, “What I have found is that often, although when repairs are completed, the sub contractor does not seem to repair them to the standard set down by the county council. Only the other day, a constituent advised me that one of the crews turned up, tipped some tarmac into the hole, jumped up and down on it a couple of times and then drove off and this was a repeat repair following a previous similarly shoddy attempt.

“I am now working with Highways Officers to crack down on poor quality repairs and ensure that taxpayers do not have to pay for sub-standard repairs.

“All holes should be cut out properly, completely filled and then sealed around the edge in order to last as long as possible and I understand that doing the job properly only takes minutes longer.

“I would urge residents and motorists to join me in reporting examples of poor repairs so that together we can crack down on poor workmanship and help our council continue to drive up standards.”

If you have seen a pothole which needs repairing call the county council on 0345 60 80 193, via Twitter @esccroads or online www.eastsussex.gov.uk/fault. You can also email your pothole pictures to the Gazette at eastbourne.herald@trbeckett.co.uk