John Redwood on Twi...
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John Redwood on Twitter. Potholes.

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Why would anyone oversimplify complex matters? 🙄

Councils should mend more potholes instead of imposing more road restrictions on people trying to get to work by van and car.

John Redwood's tweet suggests that councils should prioritise filling potholes over implementing road restrictions. However, this claim oversimplifies the complex challenges faced by local authorities when it comes to maintaining their road networks.

Firstly, it's important to note that central government funding to councils has indeed been decreasing in recent years. According to a report by the Institute for Fiscal Studies, local authorities in England experienced a real-terms cut of 49% in government funding between 2010 and 2020. This has forced councils to make difficult decisions about how to allocate their resources, including their spending on road maintenance.

However, it's also important to note that road restrictions can be a necessary tool for local authorities to manage traffic flow and reduce congestion. This is particularly important in urban areas, where high levels of traffic can have negative impacts on air quality, public health, and quality of life. By reducing the number of vehicles on the road, local authorities can also encourage people to use alternative forms of transportation, such as public transport, cycling, or walking, which can have positive impacts on both the environment and public health.

In terms of potholes, it's true that they can be a major issue for drivers, particularly in rural areas. According to a study by the Asphalt Industry Alliance, local authorities in England and Wales faced a backlog of 4.1 million potholes in 2020, with an estimated cost of £10.24 billion to repair. 

In summary, John Redwood's claim that councils should prioritise pothole repairs over road restrictions oversimplifies the complex challenges faced by local authorities when it comes to managing their road networks. While funding cuts have certainly impacted councils' ability to maintain their roads, road restrictions can be an important tool for managing traffic flow and reducing congestion. At the same time, funding share for pothole repairs has actually increased in recent years, suggesting that local authorities are already prioritising this issue with their limited resources.

“I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit. It’s the only way to be sure.”

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