Many risky rural roads still need maintenance

In the government’s latest report on roads, it seems a lot are crumbling and still awaiting repair. Anyone who uses rural roads knows this.

The report says:

The proportion of ‘A’ roads categorised as red (roads that should be considered for maintenance) in 2020/21 remained below levels seen in 2012/13. Following the peak in 2012/13, there was a period of improvement until 2015/16, followed by a period of stability. In 2020/21, the proportion of ‘B’ and ‘C’ roads combined categorised as red was stable, in line with trends seen in the previous 5 years. Unclassified roads have seen greater year on year fluctuation than other road categories and the percentage of Unclassified roads categorised as red increased in 2020/21.

The RAC says:

“Given that most roads looked after by councils are minor ones, it’s hugely concerning – and rather disappointing – that an increasing proportion are ear-marked for maintenance, particularly with so many already in need of repair. What’s more, unclassified roads in more rural areas tend to have poor safety records compared to their major road counterparts, so crumbling infrastructure only adds to the risks faced by both drivers and cyclists.

“We had hoped that the fact so few people were using the roads last year because of the pandemic would have given councils a golden opportunity to catch up on much-needed road repairs. Sadly, this data appears to show there’s still a huge amount to be done.

“Given the vast sums drivers pay in taxes every year, it’s only reasonable for them to expect all roads to be in a good condition.”

Large pot hole

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