This a pothole update to my 2020 blog reported on the ubiquitous problem of potholes, and why they never seem to fixed by the authorities mandated to keep them from appearing in our roads.
That story highlighted two British town councillors who threw a street party for a pothole that was two years old. The stunt worked. The following day the pothole was filled in by the authorities. Not to be up-staged, the councillors then threw a lavish party, complete with cake and candles, to mark the pothole’s demise. The people of Worthing, in West Sussex, applauded. At that time, the U.K.’s roads ranked somewhere between Slovenia and Lithuania in quality; that’s 37th in the world. An obvious disgrace.
I reported that the U.K. road maintenance budgets fell from £1.1 billion in 2009 to £700 million in 2017. That’s the equivalent of 8 million potholes. The U.K. Asphalt Industry Alliance claims there is a road repair backlog of £11billion. If my math is correct, that is 220 million potholes.
I further asked: Who collects these statistics? A little old man with a notebook counting potholes? Maybe an army of little old men with notebooks counting potholes? The image is …………I was lost for words!
Don’t laugh! Nottinghamshire is the pothole capital of the U.K with 253,920 potholes reported between 2017 and 2019. Someone must be counting them. Even the Conservative Party manifesto announced the “biggest-ever pothole-filling programme” with a promised budget, over five years, of £2.5 billion. This is serious stuff!
I also noted that it was time to invest in vehicle shock-absorber manufacturers. A sure-fire way to make my fortune!
I’M GLAD TO REPORT THAT THE SITUATION HAS IMPROVED.
The authorities in Trindad have upgraded their public response to potholes…….they have vastly improved the “Model” they use to highlight the problem, as you can see from the lead picture of this blog. The potholes have increased in size, again as you can see from the picture, but the new photo is a definite improvement.
As far as the U.K. is concerned, the situation is much the same. The problem of potholes is still rampant but, I’m glad to report, the British sense of humour has risen to the occasion again. A group of fed-up motorists gave the town of Billericay, in Essex, a fake Tripadvisor rating. They named potholes in Jacksons Road, Billericay as one of the best things to see when visiting the town. Individual reviews suggested that is was a “thrill of a lifetime” and “a good getaway for the family”. One stated that “My car happened upon this hole yesterday and I teleported to Australia”.
In a world that is getting so stupidly politically-correct, any sense of humor is becoming a public liability, I’m glad to see the art is still alive and well, if unfortunately closeted in many instances.
Further updates on “potholes of the world” will follow in due course.