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AA survey reveals road quality across UK worse than 10 years ago

A nationwide opinion poll of AA members has shown that two thirds of UK motorists believe road surface conditions have worsened over the last ten years.

The AA populous panel submitted 17,481 responses from across the regions, with almost 90% of the most experienced drivers agreeing there had been no overall improvement in road quality over the last decade.

The findings will place further pressure on the Treasury, following the publication of research by the Royal Automobile Club (RAC) last month showing that only a quarter of UK fuel duty collected by the Treasury is reinvested in road maintenance.

AA president Edmund King said, "Britain's motorists are paying record levels of taxation and yet receive poor value for money. These findings from the AA/Populus survey come as a stark reminder that, despite some extra government funding for road maintenance at the start of the decade, the cash is nowhere enough for drivers to see real improvement in road condition."

"Road maintenance must no longer be the poor relation when it comes to funding whether it is at local authority or national government level. Skimping can cost lives and not a single one should be lost on the roads for want of a pothole being filled or surface renewed".

Current estimates for the shortfall in UK road maintenance budgets stand at £1bn, according to the AA, and the current backlog for maintenance projects is roughly 11 years.

Shadow transport secretary, Theresa Villiers, has condemned the government's management of UK road infrastructure saying they had "spent 11 years waging war on the motorist".

"Ruth Kelly has carelessly wasted taxpayers cash on unfinished and botched road programmes with many often costing 40 per cent more than initial estimates," Villiers commented.

"Ruth Kelly repeatedly treats the public like fools reheating old announcements as a smokescreen to cover up for years of Government failure."

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