Compensation paid to drivers has tumbled by almost 75% since the launch of a drive to make Surrey’s roads more pothole-proof.
Cash paid out fell by more than £400,000 during the first two years of the scheme to build 300 miles of roads that come with a 10-year guarantee.
In 2012-13 – the year before the five-year Operation Horizon programme hit the road – the county council paid out more than £550,000. By the end of 2014-15, the amount spent settling claims due to the state of roads had plummeted to less than £147,000.
The news came as the council renewed its call for Surrey to benefit from the new roads fund from Vehicle Excise Duty unveiled in the last Budget that will only be spent on motorways and major A roads managed by Highways England.
In Surrey they cover 100 miles while more than 3,300 miles overseen by the council and used daily by businesses and residents will not see an extra penny.
John Furey, Surrey County Council’s Cabinet Member for Highways, said: “Operation Horizon is all about trying to solve the problem of potholes once and for all and while these figures are really encouraging the government needs to act to ensure Surrey benefits from this new fund.
“That is especially the case given that local drivers generate £80 million more a year in Vehicle Excise Duty than they ever get back for the county’s highways and government funding for our roads is falling by £1m annually despite the number of miles driven on them every year rising by 100 million since 2010.”
Below is a timelapse video of a pothole-proof road being built. It took less than a day to complete but can be watched in just 42 seconds. Feel free to embed it.