THE freezing winter has forced Alistair Darling into spending £100m on none other than potholes.
The craters were opened up by the wear and tear of lorries and cars on our snow filled roads from November through to the end of February. A report published yesterday showed that pothole repairs rose 40 per cent last year costing a total of £1.4m.
The Asphalt Industry Alliance, which commissioned the report said: “We would not be surprised if there was an increase in the number of potholes of at least the same magnitude.”
The investment will be received by local authorities, which were left £400m out of pocket last year thanks to road repairs. It is estimated that this years snow damage could cost London councils £20m of their annual £80m budget. London has seen the biggest increase in bumpy car journeys, rising by 53 per cent over the past year.
Professor Stephen Glaister, director of the RAC Foundation, said: “At least the chancellor has recognized the problem of potholes, but £100m for local roads will not go far.” He added that in some instances whole roads need to be rebuilt, which will require billions rather than millions to fix.
The chancellor also confirmed that £285m will be invested in the motorway network, which will be used to fund initiatives such as hard-shoulder running.