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£200M released to tackle UK potholes

Potholes 2

The Department for Transport has committed £201M to road maintenance and pot hole repairs.

Transport secretary Chris Grayling set aside £50M for councils to tackle pot holes and improve flood resilience on UK roads. An additional £151M is also available to councils who show they are tackling pot hole and road repairs to a high standard.

The funding will come from £6.6bn the government is providing in the six years to 2021 to improve local roads.

The DfT has also vowed to fund early stage research into new surface materials or pothole repair techniques, including 3D printing.

A digital hub will also be set up by the DfT for experts to share and develop innovations,

“It is now up to highways authorities to innovate and use new technologies to solve the problem,” said Grayling.

Earlier this year, the government announced it would be providing £23M for trials of new technologies to develop pot hole-free roads, such as using kinetic energy to heat surfaces, recycling plastic waste into a harder-wearing surface or installing sensors to predicts where issues might occur.

Last month, Grayling also argued that utilities companies should be held to account for pot holes on their sites.

Companies will be forced to repair road surfaces for up to five years if potholes develop on the site of roadworks, under the proposals tabled by Grayling. Utility firms’ roadworks are currently only guaranteed for two years.

Experts have previously warned that poor quality roads with potholes could hold back the progress of autonomous vehicle development.

But in January it was revealed that the number of potholes on local roads in the UK has fallen by 27% since 2016.

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