The very wet and cold winter we have had has caused a lot of potholes to appear on the network, and unfortunately I don’t think we have seen the back of the cold weather just yet.
However, we are working hard to address these issues and keep our roads safe. We’ve introduced find and fix gangs on our A and B roads, who patrol our key routes and can quickly repair problems as soon as they find them. And where there are more serious, on-going issues, we’re looking to bring forward patching and resurfacing schemes to stop potholes forming in the first place – such as on the A15 between Lincoln and Sleaford, where we’ll be resurfacing a 5-mile stretch once the weather improves.
In January 2021 our teams repaired 2,480 potholes across Lincolnshire, and just last week alone (22 February to 1 March), we managed to fix over 1,500. Our teams have adapted well to the challenges the pandemic has thrown at us, and now are able to raise repair jobs from the roadside with mobile devices, rather than travelling to the office. We’re also trialling new technologies that allow us to action repairs even faster, such as the JCB Pothole Pro.
This winter season, we’ve been out gritting nearly 90 times, and spread over 25,000 tonnes of salt on the roads. The last time we had winter weather like this was in 2018, and at the end of that winter we had nearly 20,000 outstanding reports of potholes from residents waiting to be fixed. Currently, we have around 3,000 outstanding public reports, and 70% of those already have repairs scheduled – so we are doing much better at responding to these reports and fixing defects in a timely manner.
I appreciate that at this time of year potholes will be one of the main concerns that residents contact us about, and I hope you can see that we’re doing all we can to repair them as soon as we can.
Pleasekeep reporting problems to us through FixMyStreet, and we will repair them. If they can, and it’s safe to do so, including a picture in their report can help us to schedule a repair even quicker.
Across the county we manage and maintain over 5,500 miles of road, and despite our best efforts and continued efficiency improvements in the way we work, it would cost around £400m to bring all our roads and pavements up to standard. This year’s maintenance budget is £51m, so while we will continue to work hard and keep Lincolnshire’s roads safe, ultimately how much work we can do is dictated by how much we can invest in the network.