‘Roads are not like those in a third world country’
ROADS in Bucks are not similar to those in a third world country, insist county chiefs as a major pothole repair scheme continues.
However, the leader of the council has warned that more potholes are expected to plague Bucks roads if another harsh winter sweeps the nation.
At a meeting of Bucks County Council’s cabinet on Monday September 10, leader Martin Tett said he received numerous complaints over the winter regarding deteriorating roads.
However, while Cllr Tett accepts harsh winter weather added to the growing number of potholes, he has disputed some residents’ claims Bucks roads are comparable to those in the most deprived areas of the world.
He said: “Everybody nationally has been in despair about the state of the roads this year.
“As a country we have underfunded repairs on our roads, probably for decades. This needs massive investment from government.
“However having just come back from some third world countries where I spent my holiday, when people write in saying the roads are like a third world country, I have photographs that prove our roads are not like a third world country’s.
“The places I have been to, they are horrendous by comparison.”
Speaking after the meet- ing, Cllr Tett said “it is likely” there will be more potholes across the county following the coming winter
He added: “We are very much in the hands of the weather. The worst thing on our roads is not snow, but rain, lots and lots of water just sitting on the roads and freezing overnight. If we get lots of rain then cold nights you are likely to see more potholes next year. It’s the honest truth.
“Do we understand it could happen? Yes. Do we have vast amounts of money available to fix them? No.”
Transport chief, councillor Mark Shaw, defended figures which showed just 43% of the most serious potholes were repaired within two days during the first quarter of the year, despite the fact the target was 93%.
He said: “On the island of Corfu, after complaints for five years, they finally filled potholes bigger than the size of these desks. We are a lot quicker than that in Bucks I am delighted to say. We have to take this whole thing with a large cup of tea, because the reality is we had such a bad winter. Potholes and other defects increased by about 300%, which meant we failed to meet the targets of looking at these and dealing with them in two days.”
Road repairs are expect- ed to continue well into the autumn, with the plane and patch programme – which focuses on large clusters of potholes – set to finish in October.