MORE than £8 million of taxpayers' funds were spent on pothole-related payouts, with Essex being one of the country's compensation claim hotspots.

A Freedom of Information request, made by Heycar, found millions of pounds are being spent resolving pothole claims, both for car damage and personal injury.

The council that paid out the most to settle pothole-related compensation claims last year was Manchester with £1,165,279 followed by Derbyshire and Essex with payouts totalling £500,965 and £472,164.

However, Essex County Council received £13.6 million from the Government this February to repair thousands of potholes across the county.

The Department for Transport says an average pothole costs £50 to fill in, meaning 272,760 could be repaired across Essex using the cash.

Chelmsford Weekly News:

Essex County Council's leader Kevin Bentley said 11,615 potholes were fixed across Essex in 2020, but admitted the council has a "major challenge" to repair those caused by the coldest winter in a decade.

Dan Powell, senior editor at Heycar, said: “Potholes are such a familiar sight, and I’m sure everyone will have a top ‘worst road’ in their area that comes to mind when potholes are mentioned – but they’re much more than just an inconvenience.

“They’re causing real damage to people and their vehicles and the rate at which potholes are appearing is too fast for councils to keep up with.

"So even more claims will be coming, further reducing the funds available for road repairs."

Read more >> Essex County Council gets £13 million for pothole repairs 

In Colchester, repairs are finally being planned for what has been named the "worst road for potholes" in the town.

Essex Highways has confirmed it will be undertaking repairs to the potholes near the bridge over the River Colne in East Street next month.

Residents have regularly hit out at the state of the potholes in the road, which is a key route into the town centre.

Essex County Council has been contacted for comment.

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