Running Costs

Martin Green made this Freedom of Information request to Essex County Council

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The request was partially successful.

Dear Essex County Council,

Under the Freedom of Information Act I would like to know:

In the past three years,

- how much have you spent repairing potholes?
- how much have you paid in compensation to people injured by tripping or falling on a pothole?
- how much have you paid to people whose cars have been damaged because of potholes?
- how many complaints have been made about potholes?
- how many repairs are waiting to be carried out?
- the three streets in Chelmsford Borough that received the most complaints about potholes?
- the three streets in Maldon District that received the most complaints about potholes?
- the three streets in Braintree District that received the most complaints potholes?
- the three streets in Essex that received the most complaints about potholes?

Yours faithfully,

Martin Green

Louise Tunstall, Essex County Council

Mr Green,

Thank you for your request for information, which was received by Essex
County Council on 17 November 2010.

We will determine and let you know whether we hold the information you
have requested and consider whether it is exempt from disclosure. Under
certain circumstances we may charge for providing information, but we will
let you know before we do any work that would incur a charge.

Your request is covered by the Freedom of Information Act under which we
must respond within 20 working days.

Please contact me if you would like further advice or assistance about
your request or your right to access information held by Essex County
Council.

Kind regards,

Louise Tunstall

Business Services Support Officer

Essex County Council | Environment, Sustainability & Highways

Ext: 37187 | Email: [1][email address]

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David Prudence HT Senior Technician - Asset Management, Essex County Council

Dear Mr Green

Thank you for your request for information, received by this organisation
on 17^th November 2010, in which you requested the items of information
outlined below. I have annotated your questions to indicate where our
response can be found within this e-mail.

In the past three years,

1. - how much have you spent repairing potholes? * Please refer to
Table 1 below (and comment 1 below)

2. - how much have you paid in compensation to people injured by
tripping or falling on a pothole? Answer: £64,395

3-      how much have you paid to people whose cars have been damaged
because of potholes? Answer: £214,631

4. - how many complaints have been made about potholes? * Please refer
to Comment 1 below

5. - how many repairs are waiting to be carried out? * Please refer to
Comment 2 below

6. - the three streets in Chelmsford Borough that received the most
complaints about potholes? * Please refer to Table 2 below

7. - the three streets in Maldon District that received the most
complaints about potholes? * Please refer to Table 3 below

8. - the three streets in Braintree District that received the most
Please refer to Table 4 below

complaints potholes? *

9. - the three streets in Essex that received the most complaints
Please refer to Table 5 below

about potholes? *

Table 1

District Patching Budget Patching Budget Additional Patching
08-09 09-10 Government Grant Budget 10-11
for Winter Damage
09-10
Chelmsford £ £ £
753,520 683,448 £ 250,449 533,963
Maldon £ £ £
442,800 342,439 £ 135,409 332,738
Braintree £ £ £
1,088,023 924,080 £ 284,763 764,604
£ £ £
Total 2,284,343 1,949,967 £ 670,621 1,631,305

Comment 1

In the first instance please let me explain that Essex County Council does
not record carriageway defects as `pot holes'. Carriageway defects are
categorised as `carriageway structural defects' or `carriageway surface
defects'. Our asset management system has recorded 36,000 `customer
enquiries' relating to carriageway structural and carriageway surface
defects combined, over the last three years to this date. I would also
like to clarify that `customer enquiries' are reports about defects. With
reference to our complaints procedures, very few of these `customer
enquiries' would actually be categorised as complaints.

Comment 2

You have also asked how many repairs are waiting to be carried out, and
this matter also requires some explanation in order to clarify. There are
four priorities of response relating to our maintenance activities. The
priority of response selected in each instance will be derived from the
inspectors risk assessment on site, in accordance with the Essex County
Council Essex Highway Maintenance Strategy:

Priority 1: response requiring a `make safe' or repair within 2 hours of
the defect being identified on site by an inspector

Priority 2: response requiring a `make safe' or repair by the end of next
working day from the time the defect is identified on site by an inspector

Priority 3: up to 28 day repair

Priority 4: more than 28 days repair

It is also worth pointing out that the Council batches defects together
for purpose of repair, in order to derive cost benefits from programming
of work, traffic management arrangements and the like. In this respect
the batched works are likely to include defects other than carriageway
defects. This means that the number of individual carriageway repairs
would be too impracticable and time consuming to calculate. I am afraid
therefore that we are unable to provide this information.

Table 2
Chelmsford Quantity
Ferrers Road South Woodham Ferrers 135
Wood Street Chelmsford 67
Downham Road Stock 55

Table 3
Maldon Quantity
The Street Latchingdon 27
Fambridge Road Maldon 26
Burnham Road Latchingdon 26

Table 4
Braintree Quantity
Station Road Hatfield Peverel 49
Panfield Lane Braintree And Bocking 37
Witham Road White Notley 29

Table 5
Essex Quantity
Ferrers Road South Woodham Ferrers 135
Outwood Common Road Billericay 85
Berechurch Hall Road Colchester 83

I hope you feel that the information provided here is useful. However, if
you are not satisfied with my response to your request, please let me
know. If I am unable to resolve the issue I will explain our complaints
procedure. If, after following our complaints procedure, you are still
not satisfied, you are entitled to ask the Information Commissioner to
review our decision. You can contact him at Wycliffe House, Water Lane,
Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF.

Please contact me if you would like further advice or assistance about
your request. If you would like further advice as to your right to access
information held by Essex County Council then please telephone 01625
545700.

You may reuse all or part of this information free of charge in any format
or medium. You must reuse it accurately and not in a misleading context.

Regards,

David Prudence

Senior Technician

Asset Management

01245 437780

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