Taxpayers will have to pay as council hit by pot hole damage claims

Hampshire County Council has been hit by more than 1000 claims for pothole damage to vehicles in just three months – and taxpayers will have to foot the bill.

At the Hampshire annual meeting yesterday, Councillor Jackie Porter asked Councillor Nick Adams-King how many motorists and cyclists have made claims, whether successfully or not, for damaged vehicles and accidents due to potholes in the first three months of 2023.

Councillor Adams-King said that from January 1st to March 31st, there were 1,175 claims.

He said: “The majority of the claims would not yet have the decision made on liability. Most would still be on the highways team for processing.

Using her supplementary question, Councillor Porter asked again whether that was a usual figure or could vary throughout the year.

Councillor Adams-King said: “I cannot do a ‘like for like.’ I would say that looking at previous years, we are ahead of the average that we would normally have.”

He reminded the chamber that people have six years to submit a claim.

In March, Hampshire County Council received £5,954,400 from the Government’s spring budget to help local communities to tackle and repair potholes.

At the time, Councillor Nick Adams-King, the county council’s executive lead member for universal services, said that over the winter, the county council repaired 16,748 potholes and other road defects due to increased reported issues.