UK & World News
Motorists Face Miles Of Roadworks Misery
Motorists who complain about the amount of roadworks they have to deal with do have a point, according to a new survey.
A total of 91 councils provided information about the number of roadworks in their area, with the unfinished projects in these areas totalling almost 25,000.
Among the oldest projects are repairs on the A629 Brow Lane in Halifax and Carey Street in London, both of which began more than 18 months ago.
LV=, which commissioned the survey, estimates there are over 2,300 miles of roads currently being repaired.
Suffolk County Council has the most outstanding roadworks (1,906), followed by Leicestershire City Council (1,250) and Derby City Council (930).
A total of 109 councils said how much they had spent on road maintenance in 2013, with the overall figure of more than £647m equating to an average of £5.94m per council area.
LV= Road Rescue managing director Peter Horton said: "Local authorities face a difficult challenge to repair and maintain our roads this year, particularly given the impact of the adverse weather we have seen in recent months.
"With more cars on the road than ever, it will be hard to carry out roadworks without impacting drivers."
They also spoke to over 2,000 drivers who said that roadworks were affecting a third of journeys and adding an average of 12 minutes to travel times.
Roadworks have caused 14% of motorists to be late for meetings in the last year.
Work also causes frustrations to boil over.
A total of 13% of drivers say they have experienced aggressive behaviour from another motorist while stuck in roadworks.
Four percent, the equivalent of 1.2 million drivers, have broken down as a result of their car over-heating while sitting in traffic.
While 66% of those polled felt road quality in their area was getting worse, 37% said projects were not completed quickly enough.
Peter Box, chairman of the Local Government Association's economy and transport board, said authorities always tried to carry out work quickly and to a high standard.
But a lack of cash has "trapped councils in an endless cycle of only being able to patch up our road network", he claimed.
"We need increased and consistent funding for the widespread resurfacing projects we desperately need if we're ever to see a long-term improvement," he said.
The drivers have little sympathy though, they just want to get to work, and get home, without delays.