Motorists in Sunderland have been warned as to the perils of potholes after it was revealed drivers in the North East have had to shell out almost £25million in the last year on repairs.
Research by car repair company Kwik Fit found that in the last 12 months, British motorists have had to fund repair bills totalling £684million, as a result of damage caused by hitting holes in the roads.
One pothole can cause misery for countless motoristsRoger Griggs
In the North East, that figure was £24,922,380, with 343,000 drivers suffering pothole damage at an average repair cost of £72.66.
Across the country, 6.3million drivers suffered damage from hitting potholes, with motorists having to pay out an average of £108.60 for repairs to tyres, wheels, suspension, exhausts or other bodywork.
Roger Griggs, communications director at Kwik Fit, said: “We all understand that council budgets are stretched right across the country, but this research shows the financial burden being placed upon individual motorists.
“And that’s purely the repair bill – it doesn’t take into account the inconvenience to people in having their cars off the road for repairs.
“One pothole can cause misery for countless motorists, so it’s vital that local authorities make it as easy as possible for people to report the presence of a pothole.
“But we would also encourage drivers to do their bit by reporting the ones they see and not relying on others to do it.
“Fortunately, not everyone who hits a pothole suffers damage, but alloy wheels and low-profile tyres make our cars more vulnerable to costly repairs when we do.
“Sometimes damage won’t appear obvious immediately, so we encourage anyone who has hit a pothole to keep checking their tyres and wheels in the days afterwards.”
Sunderland City Council was unavailable for comment.
The latest figures showed that just 6% of pothole claims in Sunderland were successful in 2014-15. Of 69 compensation claims against Sunderland City Council in 2014-15, four were successful, at a value of £1,175.