As the UK recovers from a burst of ice and snow, more and more potholes may start to appear on roads in Wales – a dreaded issue for both motorists and local councils.
A new scrolling animation highlights just how much of an issue potholes cause for motorists in Wales, as the problem is revealed to stretch almost 1km deep.
New Freedom of Information data obtained by Confused.com reveals motorists in Wales have been given quite the bumpy ride, as 24,793 potholes were reported to local councils in 2017/18. To see just how far this problem goes, Confused.com has combined these reports with the minimum depth of a road defect to be considered a pothole to reveal a total depth of almost 1km (985m).
Users can then scroll past the Mariana Trench (11km) and the World’s deepest man-made hole (12.3km) into the Earth’s upper mantle (30km) before arriving at the combined depth of the UK’s 905,172 potholes. This is over 33 km deep and three times the depth of the deepest part of the Pacific Ocean.
The animation also allows users to drill down to specific areas within Wales, and Swansea comes out on top for having the deepest pothole problem in the region, with almost 5,824 potholes reported in one year, stretching to 291m deep.
Having this many potholes can be a very costly job for councils, as they fork out for repairs, as well as compensation to victims of damage to vehicles caused by road defects. In fact, almost more than a third (36%) of motorists in Wales say they have had their car damaged by a pothole in the past.
And this led to councils in the region forking out £43,078 to compensate motorists for this damage in one year alone (2017/18). This is on top of the £4.6 million spent repairing road defects in the same year.
|The scale of the UK’s pothole problem has not gone unnoticed by motorists.
Research by Confused.com found more than a third (34%) of UK drivers have suffered damage to their vehicle as a result of poor road conditions.
|Top 5 local councils in Wales with the deepest pothole problem|
And it seems February is the most prolific month for this, as more than one in seven (15%) incidents occurred during this time of year. Most of the damage reported was to the vehicle’s tyres (53%), while more than a quarter (26%) said hitting the pothole caused damaged to their suspension, which can be quite costly to fix.
This could explain why local authorities across the UK have had to fork out almost £2.8 million to compensate victims of pothole damage in one year (2017/18).