Extra teams will help mend potholes in West Sussex

Even more repair teams are being dedicated to tackling potholes in West Sussex, with an additional two ‘seek and fill’ gangs starting work soon.

The number of repair teams had already been increased from 12 to 15, with approximately 250 potholes repaired per day.

One of West Sussex County Council's pothole repair teams

One of West Sussex County Council's pothole repair teams

Now, the additional two roving gangs will start work next week and a team dedicated to patching larger areas of road surface will also begin soon.

The extra resources are being funded from the £1,594,870 West Sussex County Council received from the Department for Transport’s Pothole Action Fund for this financial year.

Bob Lanzer, county council cabinet member for highways and infrastructure, said: “We would like to reassure residents that we take the issue of potholes very seriously – hence the extra resources.

“West Sussex Highways, and particularly our contractor, Balfour Beatty Living Places, are working hard to tackle the issue.

“In 2017, we repaired approximately 14,500 potholes. In the first four months of 2018, which have included periods of severe weather, we have already repaired more than 8,500.

“We have already started to deliver this year’s resurfacing programme which will see three-and-a-half miles of principal roads and almost six miles of local roads have their old and worn surfaces replaced.

“In addition, we are extending the life of 12-and-a-half miles of the principal roads and around 26 miles of local roads with a programme of surface-dressing.

“Surface dressing involves treating roads which are in relatively good condition with preventative maintenance treatments to maintain their good condition.”

Mr Lanzer said some residents had asked why, when they see a pothole repair team in one road, they cannot simply go to another site nearby.

“This could be for a variety of reasons: they may have no spare materials on the van, having been tasked to fill other potholes, or it could be that the other road needs traffic management, such as traffic lights, so they can do the repair safely and this takes time to arrange.”

In recent months, the frequent changes between freezing/cold temperatures, to mild/wet weather, and back again, have increased the number of potholes on our roads.

The council said that unfortunately roads ‘are not permanent structures and deteriorate over time from constant use, the weight of vehicles using them and the effects of the weather’, adding: “With the expansion and contraction caused by temperature change, deterioration will occur, resulting in new potholes.”

You can read more about the Pothole Watch campaign launched by this paper and our sister papers here.

Read how West Sussex County Council prioritises potholes in the county here.