Call for resources to tackle potholes

Alderman Stewart McDonald.
Alderman Stewart McDonald.

Over 500 potholes incidents were recorded in the Mid and East Antrim council area between November to December last year.

Figures obtained by the Ballymena Times reveal that a total of 518 potholes were recorded, from November to December.

The latest figures show a significant reductioncompared to the same period in 2016 when 946 incidents were reported to the Department for Infrastructure.

The figures come as a local councillor has called for more resources to be freed up in a bid to tackle potholes in the borough.

Alderman Stewart McDonald said he had seen a large increase in the number of people contacting him about potholes in recent days.

“I have been in contact with the statutory agencies and unfortunately the news is not good in the short term. I have been advised that Road Service does not have the resources to bring in contractors to do the work as they normally would and that the raw materials for Road Service to do it themselves are simply not on hand,” Mr McDonald said.

He added: “I realise that this is disappointing but the issue is out of the hands of local people. I have written to the Permanent Secretary in the Department of Infrastructure making my unhappiness with this intolerable situation clear and demanding that resources are freed up as a matter of urgency.”

A Department for Infrastructure spokesperson told the Times: “Despite a challenging budgetary situation, the Department has delivered a significant programme of resurfacing and surface dressing and continues to carry out a programme of routine maintenance including pothole repairs and street lighting repairs to meet all essential public safety requirements.

“The Department has also successfully secured additional funding this year and so will be able to deliver some further road resurfacing and street lighting upgrades along with routine maintenance of our heavily trafficked road network.”