When is a pothole not a pothole? Devon County Council can tell you – but its policy leaves many genuine problems unfixed

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‘We will not ignore any reports, however, we do have to prioritise our funding on safety and we cannot afford to fix all of the problems that are reported to us.

‘We will repair potholes that have a 40mm vertical edge and are 300mm wide.’

This is DCC’s policy. It means that many genuine problems don’t get fixed, or not until they’ve deteriorated.

In particular, this policy means that one hole is fixed, while the next one is left. It’s wasteful of time and effort, as well as damaging to people’s cars.

It results from the outsourcing of Highways maintenance, which requires that contractors meet precise specifications rather than using their common sense.

This policy infuriates many residents. I have repeatedly criticised it at County Hall. If we get a change of administration, a change in this policy will be one of my priorities.

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