Figures from the Department for Transport (DfT) showed four per cent of A roads needed repair in England, along with seven per cent of other roads.
But the number of roads in disrepair in our region is consistently below the national average. It means that, although we may moan about the state our roads, they are actually in a better condition than in many other parts of the country.
Councils are responsible for looking after many of our main roads. Walsall Council says it alone has, in the last two years, resurfaced 24.6 miles of roads and 22.4 miles of footways. It says 68,938 drains have been cleaned, 28 miles of road markings renewed and 10,000 potholes repaired.
Councillor Karen Shakespeare, cabinet member for public realm in Dudley, said: “We’re glad to see that we score better than the average local authority in terms of roads needing repair.
“We continue to review our programme of works, investing in priority areas. We work hard to keep our roads in good condition but we are always battling against the damage caused by snow and ice and general wear and tear and we’ve recently invested £1million pounds in our residential roads which will allow us to target potholes across miles of residential streets as well as some complete resurfacing of roads.”
Councillor Ahmad Bostan, Sandwell Council’s cabinet member for environment, said: “Roads make a crucial contribution to our society: they provide us with access to employment, health services, education and bring important social benefits. Sandwell Council is committed to investing in the maintenance of our road infrastructure for the benefit of both current and future residents and is dependent on DfT funding to achieve this.”
Councillor David Williams, cabinet member for highways and transport at Staffordshire County Council, said: “Good roads are incredibly important to residents, motorists and of course the economy and it is important to invest in keeping them safe and well maintained.
“This year we are investing over £18m on pothole prevention treatments, repairs and resurfacing schemes as well as a further £2M on maintaining and repairing gullies and drains.
“We know that government funding for local road maintenance is not enough to keep up with the repairs needed. It’s a national challenge, but as we can see from these figures, Staffordshire is a front runner in getting the best out of the money available.
David added: “We do carry out routine inspections of our roads and all defects are inspected as soon as possible and assessed for their severity. Any defect which poses an immediate risk is dealt with as a priority, and we aim to repair dangerous potholes within seven days. Lesser priority repairs are carried out when resources are available.
“Anyone with concerns about potholes can report them on the MyStaffs App or at www.staffordshire.gov.uk.”