Motortrades Insight Magazine Online Subscribe About Us Contact Us Motortrades Insight - Motoring News, Articles & Interviews Home Finance Reviews Under The Hood Motorsport Business Profiles Archive Related Tags: aa president, edmund king, Potholes, pothole britain, deadly potholes, pothole related road accidents, the aa, under the hood AA president Edmund King on deadly potholes By: Danny Hewitt Ref:A0518 Published: 24 July 2013

potholes in britain

The AA’s president Edmund King had his Mercedes E-Class wrecked by potholes earlier this year, as he was filling it with petrol in the Hertfordshire town of St Albans, when the whole front of the estate collapsed.

Now, the outspoken boss has told Motortrades Insight the truth about killer potholes. “We actually describe it as a plague of potholes out there,” Mr King said. “We’ve had three pretty bad winters that have deteriorated the roads and many of the local highway authorities just can’t keep up. And it is a hazard to pedestrians and motorists and mostly to cyclists and motorcyclists where it really can be a matter of life or death.

In March 2010, Capt Jonathan Allen, who served in Afghanistan, was killed after being hit by a lorry as he swerved to avoid his bicycle dipping into a deep pothole in Wiltshire. “He was not killed by a bomb in Afghanistan, but by a pothole in Wiltshire.”

“It’s a safety issue. But also, it is a financial issue. In a survey, a third of AA members had their cars damaged by potholes within the last two years, including me. I had a rather graphic experience in my own estate car. I went over a few potholes, went to fill up the diesel, heard a strange sound and didn’t know what the heck it was.

“When I went to the front, I saw the whole front of the car had actually collapsed. And the springs on the suspension had actually broken. So it is a classic reminder of what can happen from hitting some potholes.”


“I think one of the problems is that we’ve got a kind of patch and patch mentality and sometimes, when you’re trying to repair a pothole, if it’s just two and a half inches deep, when you’re trying to fill it in, that pothole will occur and reoccur weeks later,” he said. “There’s one on a cycle ride that I do where the local authority does fix it, but at least once a month they have to refill it again. It gets to the stage for the life of the road when you’ve actually got to resurface it and you can’t just have a stick and plaster solution.

“We called upon the Chancellor in the spending review to actually allocate more money for road maintenance but also to ring-fence it. Part of the problem is that when money goes to local authorities for potholes, it isn’t ring-fenced so it can be spent on other things. 

“So we believe that a proportion of motoring taxes should be ring-fenced for the roads and then that sum that is ring-fenced has to be spent on road maintenance and fixing potholes. 

“It’s the number one issue for drivers today.”

Related Articles // More Like This dummyEXCLUSIVE: AA President Edmund King says ‘car insurance should come down’ Car insurance has may have reduced by 9.8 per cent from last year to an average price of £736, but the costs are still extraordinarily high and for young people, the figure is far more shocking.But dummyPothole Wars: motorists brace for 25 years of worsening weather, potholes and dodging mini-craters Potholes are destroying the finances of Britain’s hard-working drivers - motorists who are being forced into balancing their finances to pay for car repairs and food for their families.With a recentdummyHonda replicates ‘rough’ British roads on Japanese test track in effort to ensure cars are robust enough for pothole Britain HONDA is taking extraordinary measures to prepare its new vehicles for Britain's roads – by creating test tracks to replicate the UK's terrible road surfaces, Exaro, the investigative news website h 123     « Previous ArticleNext Article » Subscribe to MotorTrades insight As featured on NewsNow: Motoring news News 24/7 MotorTrades Insight are now official news providers for NewsNow. Top Stories // This Week nissans-all-gamer-line-up-takes-class-podium-at-spa-24-hoursNissan’s all-gamer line-up takes class podium at Spa 24 Hours.  Nissan’s all-gamer line-up of Lucas Ordonez, Jann Mardenborough, Wolfgang Reip and Peter Pyzera took a Pro-Am podium in the Spa 24 Hours today when they brought the No.35 Nissan GT-R Nismo GT3 to th... ferrari-shows-true-speed-at-goodwoods-20th-anniversaryFerrari shows true speed at Goodwood's 20th Anniversary.  Although the excitement of the 20th Anniversary of the Goodwood Festival of Speed is over for another year, Ferrari fans will have many memories on which to reflect until next year’s event. Ferrari ... office-of-fair-trading-slammed-for-refusing-to-investigate-uk-oil-pricesOffice of Fair Trading slammed for refusing to investigate UK oil prices.  The Road Haulage Association has said it is ‘disappointed’ at the refusal by the Office of Fair Trading to consider an investigation into the issue of UK oil pricing.Such was the strength of feeling... modern-jaguars-could-become-classics-in-distant-future-despite-being-less-fun-to-driveModern Jaguars could become classics in distant future despite being ‘less fun to drive’.  Modern Jaguars are less fun to drive but could well become classics in the distant future, according to one of the world’s leading Jaguar restoration specialists. “Less fun to drive? Yes. As fa... mclaren-p1-video-shows-british-supercar-being-driven-in-extreme-conditions-from-road-to-iceMcLaren P1 Video shows British supercar being driven in extreme conditions: from road to ice.  With only a few months remaining until the first deliveries will be made to just 375 customers, the development programme for the McLaren P1 continues to accelerate as it nears its end. This extensi... k-tec-racing-launches-163-engine-tuning-package-for-renault-sport-twingo-133K-Tec Racing launches '163' engine tuning package for Renault Sport Twingo 133.  Responding to road test observations that the Twingo 133’s excellent chassis could benefit from more power, Dorset based Renaultsport tuning specialist K-Tec Racing has created a performance tuning ... police-commissioners-do-not-regard-road-safety-as-a-high-priority-as-number-of-road-traffic-police-plummetPolice commissioners do not regard road safety as a high priority, as number of road traffic police plummet.  Traffic police numbers across Great Britain have been cut by 12 per cent in five years, with some forces suffering 30 to 40 per cent reductions, according to data released today by road safety chari... the-cool-colour-coatings-of-the-future-basf-reveals-it-is-making-more-eco-friendly-scratch-resistant-coatings-with-innovative-colour-effects-The ‘Cool Colour’ Coatings of the Future: BASF reveals it is making more eco-friendly ‘scratch-resistant’ coatings .  For paints and coatings producers, the European automotive sector is highly lucrative, with the region OEM segment offering sales opportunities across other continents.BASF, the world’s fifth larges... goodwood-festival-of-speed-pictures-from-day-oneGoodwood Festival of Speed: Pictures from Day One.  With the Goodwood Festival of Speed having kicked off in style today, many people will be looking forward to the weekend when the festival will be at its busiest. Here, we provide you with a wi... the-automotive-paint-industry-challenge-europes-difficult-economy-encourages-basf-to-aims-for-considerable-growth-in-asia-especially-chinaThe Automotive Paint Industry Challenge: Europe’s ‘difficult economy’ encourages BASF to aims for ‘considerable gro.  The automotive paint industry is being impacted by the difficult economic and financial situation, according to one of the world’s leading manufacturers of vehicle paints and coatings. Speaking... morris-minor-series-part-one-what-makes-these-little-cars-so-popularMorris Minor Series (Part One): What makes these little cars so popular?.  As the elderly population in the UK gradually increases, are more people buying Morris Minors as an affordable classic car to enjoy in retirement?Tim Brennan, Company Director at Charles Wares Morri...  Company Info // Get in Touch © Motortrades Insight Limited 2012 - 2013 Tel: 0844 656 1808 Email: Motortrades Insight Limited trading as Registered Address The Coach House Baddow Park West Hanningfield Road Great Baddow Chelmsford Essex CM2 7SY Company Reg: 07302221 VAT No: 120173663 Links // On The Web >> >> Subscribe to Mailing List >> Advertise on Motortrades Insight >> Motorsport News >> >> Motoring Industry News >> Blog >> Used Car Buyers Guide >> Link To Us >> Ratecard >> Privacy Policy >> Terms and Conditions Twitter // Follow Us Cookies on Motortrades Insight

Like many popular websites, Motortrades Insight uses some third party widgets that may set and may have already set cookies, for example the Twitter feed on our homepage. For more information see our cookie policy. By clicking close and continue you agree to our use of cookies.