Drivers blighted by pothole damage

  • 97% of drivers have to negotiate potholes on a daily basis
  • 67% of motorists could be driving damaged or unsafe cars
  • Tyre wholesaler reports 95% increase in tyre defects in winter period

A new study suggests that the majority of motorists in the UK are driving damaged or unsafe cars as a result of potholes. 

The survey by the Retail Motor Industry also revealed that 97% of drivers were forced to avoid or drive over potholes on a daily basis. The RMI asked a representative sample of more than 2,000 people to identify the journeys that regularly featured potted roads. 

Trips to the supermarket, the doctors, to and from work, visiting relatives or just driving to the petrol station were cited as journeys where motorists were more likely to encounter potholes. The survey also showed that one in three drivers had hit potholes when returning from having their car fixed or serviced. 

The winter weather is reported to be the cause of one in five mechanical failures and the RMI estimates that up to 67% of UK drivers could be driving damaged and unsafe cars with a potential repair cost of £2 billion.  

Rob Foulston, RMI Chief Executive, said: 'Given the frequency that people hit pot holes on a daily basis, we predict that up to one in three drivers are driving damaged cars, whether this is due to cracked alloys, damaged tyres or faulty suspension.' 

The proliferation of potholes over the winter period has left its mark. Tyre service wholesaler Micheldever has reported a 95% increase in damaged tyres. 

Paul Fox, of Micheldever, said: 'It is a serious road safety concern that we are seeing a marked increase in the number of drivers calling in with pothole damaged vehicles. Obviously we suggest that motorists remain alert to this increased road danger.'