The government has announced that they are set to provide local councils a £6 billion fund to help eradicate or improve potholes across UK roads as motorists and cyclists suffer devastating injuries on a daily basis. However even with unlimited funds, it is estimated that it would still take councils around 10 – 15 years to fix the deepening problem.
Consumer group “Which?” state that local authorities in England and Wales pay out nearly £30 million in compensation due to pothole injuries every year, and as roads continue to deteriorate after the poor weather in 2014, the number of compensation claims is expected to rise.
Freeclaim accident compensation solicitors are urging those who have suffered a personal injury due to a pothole to come forward as compensation may be available.
The number of accidents and deaths caused by potholes to cyclists alone reaches nearly 1000 each and every year. Car damage is of course a major knock on effect from potholes, but personal injury claims stemming from accidents involving badly maintained roads are something Freeclaim Solicitors are well versed in, obtaining thousands of pounds worth of compensation for clients who have been injured.
As the government has been accused of under spending, committing half of the estimated funds it would need to eradicate potholes, it seems the problem may never be fixed.
Drivers, cyclists, pedestrians and motorcyclists are all at risk of personal injury. If you have been injured due to a defect or pothole on the road (or other surface), you may be able to make a claim for compensation against the local council or, if on private property, against whoever owns the land.
Certain road users such as cyclists are also much more vulnerable to more serious injury and may require extensive rehabilitation and longer term care. CTC – the National Cycling Charity reported that road defects account for up to 15% of cycling accident claims.
According to research carried out by Top Gear, the South West had the most potholes repaired during 2013, with a total of 24,289 potholes being filled. The North West benefitted from 22,347 pothole repairs and thus reducing the potential for accidents. Surprisingly London was the region with the lowest amount of repairs carried out – shockingly only 3,102 potholes were filled.
Emma Greenhalgh, Head of the Road Accident Team at Freeclaim Solicitors comments,
“Potholes present serious danger to cyclists and road users. Coming off a bike at speed can result in life changing injuries and the need for ongoing care and rehabilitation. It’s important for people therefore to seek advice on claiming compensation if they suffer injury because of a pothole. A compensation claim will help not only with such things as a replacement bike but also financial losses and the replacement of lost wages, expenses, private treatment and much more.”
If you suffer injury, ensure you note down the time and date of the accident, the road name and details of the exact location. Also if possible, take a photograph of the pothole (ideally use a tape measure or ruler to show the depth) and general location to help as evidence. Sometimes a local council will repair a defect or pothole soon after the accident which means there is no photographic evidence of the state of the road surface.
This guest post was supplied by www.freeclaim.co.uk