A protester known as “Mr Pothole” has hit out at Stoke-on-Trent City Council for their decision to delay response times to fill hazardous potholes.
BBC Radio Stoke announced that the council will attempt to repair potholes within seven days instead of by the end of the next working day after a pothole report is made.
Mark Morrell, is committed to raising awareness of pothole problems on a national level.
His determination has even resulted in him being dubbed ‘Mr Pothole’ by the government; a title of which he is proud.
He claimed: “Over 400 cyclists have been killed or maimed in the last decade as a result of potholes.
“We’re seeing the results of lack of investment in the transport network for years.”
The council’s decision to delay pothole repair times is pertinent given that Staffordshire, as a local authority, has gathered a reputation for poor road quality.
The local authority paid out the third highest amount of compensation for pothole-induced vehicle damage across the UK in 2017/18 (£186,423).
One local car-driver passionately critiqued the council’s decision. She said: “I think it’s really unsafe and could end up costing the council more money in the long run!
“I think once potholes get to a certain depth and you can prove that it has done damage to your car, they have to reimburse you.”
In addition, this view is reinforced by the opinion of JMW’s partner and cycling accident solicitor, Nadia Kerr.
She said: “I deal with more and more pothole cases and am saddened that of all the range of responses to try and make the situation better on our roads for vulnerable road users, Stoke are planning to relax the response times for repairs to known defects.”
Furthermore, with pothole widening and deepening being attributable to cold and adverse weather conditions, the decision for the council to delay its response time seems surprising given that winter is around the corner.
Perhaps the council ought to reconsider their priorities to mitigate public outrage and prevent digging themselves a deeper hole.
Staffs Live is still awaiting a response from Stoke-on-Trent City Council.