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Public Sector Public Liability – Are Councils In A Pothole?

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Now clearly I’m not one for being controversial (!) but I’m sure most of us have at some stage wondered where our council tax gets spent and if it has been spent wisely, have we not? Well, the problem I have is this – I have a distinct feeling that a disproportionate amount of it gets spent on public sector public liability insurance, and here’s one of the reasons why…

My Vision Of The M6 In 2015!
My Vision Of The M6 In 2015!

I have always been led to believe that road surfacing comes out of the local council tax budget which is why if you’ve ever noticed, towards the end of the tax year random roads seem to get resurfaced for no apparent reason. The reason for this (I have been led to believe) is that if a local council does not exhaust their budget by the end of the tax year there’s a distinct possibility that said budget will be reduced for the following tax year. One of the reasons I also believe this to be true is that I regularly drive down a road where one county joins another and at that exact point, the road surface changes dramatically.

Bearing this in mind, reading the press recently I was astonished to learn a few facts. Now ok we’ve had some pretty revolting weather recently and when water enters cracks in road surfaces it creates potholes. Fine, I can live with that but maybe it’s just me but the figures just don’t seem to stack up.

For example, in 2012 there were 25,977 claims against 114 local authorities for damage caused to vehicles’ axles, suspension etc. by potholes in roads. This figure has risen dramatically to 39,249 claims in 2013, with over one in five securing payouts averaging £375 each. Basic maths suggests that this equates to 7,850 successful claims totalling £2,943,750. The average pothole costs roughly £50 to repair. Now let’s say that each one of these claims came from a different pothole at worst case scenario which is probably not the case as I should imagine that some would have been from the same location. 39,249 claims x£50=£1,962,450. For the sake of repairing those potholes there would have been a saving of £981,300.

Yeah Ok, I'm Doing My Overkill Thing Again!
Yeah Ok, I’m Doing My Overkill Thing Again!

Apparently with the horrific flooding this winter there are estimated to already be 200,000 potholes in roads across the UK needing repairs in 2014 so the number of claims I should imagine, are going to rise again dramatically this year. The government thankfully has announced that there will be an extra £140million allocated to local authorities imminently to help alleviate the problem, especially in the south which has been particularly devastated by the weather over December and January.

Statistics are statistics and can be manipulated any way you want them but the fact still remains that I can guarantee by the end of 2014 there will still be claims for vehicle damage through unsuitable road surfaces and in my opinion the ‘numbers and figures’ bods in the civil service will allocate this money to resurfacing perfectly good road surfaces rather than tackling the underlying problems. I say in my opinion because I’ve seen it with my own eyes over the years, perfectly good road surfaces being resurfaced for no apparent reason.

Sadly I have no access to statistics of how much you, our valued customer here at Comparecrazy, spends on your public sector public liability insurance out of your council tax but one thing I do know is this, if you want public liability insurance through Comparecrazy for your business, you’re guaranteed a genuinely good deal and complete transparency. We’ll give you a competitive premium and tell you exactly the cover you’re getting for your money. We can’t say fairer than that. Sorry, rant over and I’m sorry if I’ve upset anyone in the civil service but hey, it’s me who pays your wages anyway so live with it! The business insurance comparison site!

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