Letter: Expensive chaos on our roads

editorial image

Interesting to read about the efforts to clear the large number of potholes in our roads. However, it does not really examine the problem as to why they happen in the first place.

The obvious answer is a combination of bad weather and lack of money, but I am not sure that is the main reason. Potholes are mainly caused by an ingress of water lifting the tarmac over a period of time.

If they are identified and treated early enough, repair is cheap. However, that just does not happen. They are left to grow until much bigger, when repair is much more expensive and damage has already been done to passing vehicles.

One I saw, just outside Alfold, damaged about twenty cars in rapid succession bursting at least two tyres on each vehicle. Expensive chaos!

Early signs are there now. Look at the A264 around Horsham. You can see long cracks forming in the middle of each carriageway where the two sets of top dressing join. These will grow and form deep holes, whereas treating now would be easy and quick.

Even treating existing potholes needs care. After filling in, the edges need sealing to prevent water ingress and this is simply not happening. Attached is a photograph of a virulent hole in the pinch-point at the bottom of Crawley Road in Horsham.

This was a ‘killer’ and only recently repaired. Look at the photograph now; not sealed and already lifting. Soon it will be as bad as ever.

So, all authorities responsible for roads, treat incipient damage early and ensure repairs are done properly please. Otherwise you are just wasting our money.

Peter Burgess

Haybarn Drive, Horsham

Editor’s note: Mr Burgess submitted this letter as a concerned member of the public. He is chairman of Horsham District Council, member for Holbrook West, and a member of North Horsham Parish Council.