Hole lot of bother for drivers
POTHOLES left over from last winter are still to be filled as Hartlepool’s roads take a further battering from freezing temperatures plunging to minus seven degrees.
The town’s roads have been left littered with potholes from the wintery conditions, despite a specialist patching squad at Hartlepool Borough Council working flat-out all year around to carry out repairs on those left over from last winter.
Today the Mail is re-launching the Plot the Pots campaign urging you to let us know where there are potholes on town roads.
We will then send any entries to the council and bosses say they will send out specialist officers to assess the problem.
Huge holes in the road can be a danger to motorists and pedestrians and need to be repaired before anyone is hurt.
The cold and wet winter has seen potholes appearing across Hartlepool and East Durham and the current freezing temperatures, that have topped minus seven degrees in recent days, will have a devastating impact on road surfaces.
Potholes are caused when water gets into cracks in the surface of roads, before it freezes and expands, causing them to crumble away when they are driven over.
Repairs are given priority based on the size and severity of potholes and whether they are deemed to be a danger, but council chiefs are urging people to back the campaign and help get them fixed.
Mike Blair, the council’s highways, traffic and transport manager, said: “I don’t have any figures yet but from my observations the road network is suffering really badly and not just from frost and ice, but also from flooding. It is leading to an increase in potholes.
“We have our patching squad operating throughout the year and we had pretty much caught up with the vast majority of potholes that appeared over the previous winter periods.
“We will never get all of them, but I would suggest that the recent wet and cold weather have combined to create a lot more potholes then we have been used to.
“Last year was a lot milder and we benefitted from that, but looking at it now I would say it is as bad as it has been for a few years.”
Council bosses say the ideal situation would see entire roads resurfaced instead of just patching repairs, but it would cost around £25m and the Government does not provide that much funding for road schemes.
The council will spend around £350,000 this year on pothole repairs, which does not include the £640,000 that is spend in the town on resurfacing complete stretches of roads.
It has a patching squad that works solely on repairing potholes five-days-a-week and bosses say they are constantly working on repairing them.
Mr Blair said he would prefer to be able to resurface whole roads as covering potholes with patches only lasts for around two years as long as they are not hit by severe temperatures.
Regular surveys are carried out on road surfaces and potholes are categorised on how urgently they need to be repaired.
Potholes that are around an inch and a half deep and 12-inches long are aimed to be repaired within 24 hours. Council bosses aim to repair any other potholes within 28 days, and bosses say in the main they tend to reach their targets.
Roads are inspected every six months and bosses say any information on potholes would be greatly appreciated.
Mr Blair added: “We do inspections on the roads every six months, so this is where information from members of the public can be beneficial as they can give us information on potholes that have appeared since.
“Any help in identifying these potholes that people can provide us with would be beneficial all round.”
People can also report potholes by calling the council on (01429) 523333.
MORE and more potholes are appearing on the roads as the winter progresses so we are urging you to join our Plot the Pots campaign.
All you have to do go Here where we have an interactive map that will allow you to input the location of a pothole that you have spotted.
The more information you give the better.
Include in your entry the location of the pothole with detail like it being outside a particular house number.
That will make it easier for the council to find the pothole, particularly on long main roads.
You can also insert a picture of the pothole by selecting the media tab.
So, come on join in and let’s see if we can help get something done to make our roads safer.
- Controversial plans to move hospital wards from Hartlepool to Stockton
- £500,000 drug addiction cost Hartlepool businessman ‘everything’
- Hartlepool death crash driver may have been making u-turn
- Hospital chief should ‘hand back MBE’ if more services are moved
- Ritchie Humphreys set for Hartlepool United exit but Sam Collins and Andy Monkhouse stay
Search for a job
Search for a car
Search for a house
Weather for Hartlepool
Sunday 19 May 2013
Temperature: 9 C to 16 C
Wind Speed: 10 mph
Wind direction: North east
Temperature: 9 C to 17 C
Wind Speed: 14 mph
Wind direction: North