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Potholes can lead to injuries for pedestrians and cyclists
The number of potholes and the lack of repairs is a common topic of conversation this time of year.
Our roads take quite a battering with increased rain, cold temperatures, salt treatments for icy weather with many new potholes appearing and existing ones getting bigger.
Sadly every year pedestrians, cyclists, motorbike riders and motorist incur injury or loss as a result of the deteriorating road network.
According to AIA ALARM Survey 2019 there’s £9.2 billion backlog of repairs (in England and Wales) with a pothole being repaired every 17 secs. Apparently due to budget cutbacks fewer potholes are being filled. In 20 15 there 2.7million filled and only 1.86million in 2018.
According to newspaper report last autumn more than 250 cyclists were killed or seriously injured over a 5 year period. So even if we all take great care when using our roads and pavements sometimes the unexpected happens.
As its National Pothole Day it serves as a reminder to take care of roads and footpaths. Our Personal Injury Solicitor Ian Wolstenhulme has some practical safety advice.
“Firstly, if you have suffered injury you need to call for help. If you are able, move to a safe position, especially if you are a pedestrian, cyclist or motorcyclist. If not, try and alert other road users that there is a danger and you require help.
If it is only your bike or vehicle that is damaged, ensure that it is safe to drive and move to a safe place before gathering evidence from the scene to prove any future claim.”
This is not an exhaustive list, says Ian, but if you believe injury, loss or damage has been caused by a pothole in the road or pavement, you should take a note of these actions:-
- Take photographs of the pothole and use whatever is to hand, to demonstrate the size of the defect (always ensuring the safety of you and other road users)
- If there were any witnesses, obtain their details (name and mobile number etc)
- Check for any CCTV in the area and be sure to report the incident and request any footage be retained (some local authorities, shops and other CCTV users delete recordings after two weeks)
- If your car or bike has been damaged, get it checked out and obtain quotes for any necessary repairs
- Keep any receipts for alternative travel arrangements or any expenses you may have as a result of an accident, such as damaged clothing, medications or loss of earnings
- If you have suffered injury, ensure you receive treatment