Revealed: Edinburgh’s worst streets for pothole claims

Edinburgh's worst streets have been revealed. Picture; Jon Savage

Edinburgh's worst streets have been revealed. Picture; Jon Savage

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A CASH payout of £500 was dished out by the council after a person was injured in the Capital by a pothole while in their vehicle, according to new figures.

The successful claim comes after Dalmahoy Road was named as the road with Edinburgh’s highest number of pothole claims in 2016.

Lesley Hinds. Picture; Ian Rutherford

Lesley Hinds. Picture; Ian Rutherford

The figures, obtained by the News under Freedom of Information laws, reveal Lindsay Street took second place for the number of pothole claims and Queensferry Road third.

There were six other unsuccessful claims for personal injury caused by potholes.

Councillor Lesley Hinds, transport leader at the city council, said: “We’re working very hard to make Edinburgh’s roads and pavements as safe, well-maintained and accessible as possible for all residents and visitors and each year we invest many millions of pounds.

“Following the winter weather in 2015/16 where heavy rainfall was followed by a cold snap, all roads authorities were left with challenging road conditions.

“That’s why earlier this year, we set up a dedicated squad to address the issue of potholes, implementing a £200,000 package of work to carry out an intensive programme of repairs across the city.”

Drivers seeking compensation for damage caused by potholes to their vehicles were awarded £29,966 from January 1 to November 11 last year.

This is just over double the £13,867 paid out in 2015, with 167 and the 426 claims submitted in 2016 resulting in a payout.

The figures have prompted the suggestion that drivers in Edinburgh are becoming more savvy with how to claim, for example using photographs to gather evidence of damage or personal injury.

In 2016, this category saw 39 per cent of claims awarded – up from 26 per cent in 2015 and just 21 per cent in 2014.

Neil Greig, head of policy for Scotland at the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM), said drivers appeared to be more “savvy” when it came to mounting successful claims.

He said: “Surveys of drivers always come back with road maintenance as a top issue so drivers are very aware of the pothole problem.

“Our view is that every pound spent on compensation is a pound that should have been properly spent on the roads themselves. It’s money wasted in that respect.

“It’s not good to hear there’s twice the money going out this year compared to last.

“The one positive thing to draw from this is possibly Edinburgh are becoming more consumer friendly in the way they deal with these claims and that’s leading to more success for people.”

Meanwhile a total of 74 claims were submitted for compensation in relation to injuries caused by falling on pavements in the Capital but none of these were successful.

Similarly no cash was awarded for the 17 claims submitted for injuries caused by falling on the Capital’s roads.

Princes Street was named the worst contender in relation to pothole claims from pavements, with Elm Row second-worst and George Street third.

florence.snead@jpress.co.uk