LETTER: Root cause of the potholes

I read with interest the article in today’s Midhurst & Petworth Observer – one point that is not covered (and rarely is) is that in many cases the root cause of potholes/road damage is not investigated or actioned by WSCC.

The article rightly highlights one root cause as being utility companies etc not properly reinstating roads after they are dug up but in many cases – especially on rural roads – the root cause is blocked drains/culverts/ditches.

There are many examples of these blockages turning roads into virtual rivers in wet weather resulting in water damage/erosion to the road surface and substructure.

From first-hand experience WSCC’s maintenance of its infrastructure is inadequate, but having said this many ditches and watercourses are the responsibility of landowners but I am not aware of WSCC taking action to ensure these responsibilities are met – seemingly it is easier to chuck some tarmac in a pothole rather than maintain their own drainage systems or pursue landowners.

This is, of course, false economy as the damage to roads very soon reappears as the root cause remains – yes WSCC should pursue utility companies but also put their own house in order and pursue landowners

Food for thought I think.

Ian Campbell, Kirdford