Fewer than 10% of pothole compensation claims were successful in the last year, new figures reveal.
A Freedom of Information (FoI) request has shown that Bucks County Council (BCC) paid out on only 7.3% of claims brought against them for vehicle damage caused by potholes in 2015/16.
It paid for 30 out of a total of 409 claims, where someone’s car was damaged because of potholes on county council roads. The total cost of the claims to BCC stands at £8,660.63
But despite the council receiving 93 fewer claims in 2015/16 than in the previous year it still represents a jump of 0.5%.
In 2014/15, 6.8% of claims were successful, with 34 out of 502 settled, costing the council £11,330.54.
Amanda Lamont of Amersham Town council said: “It is a massive problem and there just isn’t enough money in the county to fund it.
“I think Martin Tett [leader of BCC] would love to but his money has to go elsewhere.
“We have to prioritise.”
Gordon Patrick, chairman of Chalfont St Giles Parish Council, said: “Im concerned as a councillor that potholes seem to be an ongoing thing around Bucks.
“We seem to get a lot of problems related to potholes.
“We feel that if the repairs are done properly they wouldn’t be such an ongoing problem.”
BCC budgeted £17.3 million in this financial year for the road and pavement resurfacing programme.
297 resurfacing schemes have been planned to the end of March 2017, with more than 80% having been completed.
But the presence of a road defect does not automatically make BCC liable for any damage sustained.
Mark Shaw, BCC cabinet member for transport, said that 14,610 potholes were filled between April and November.
He added: “I do understand residents’ concern over defects in our roads, and I’d dearly love to have the money to fix every defect right now.
“The reality is that our budget won’t stretch, and we’re having to make difficult decisions over which repairs to prioritise.
“The priority will always be to concentrate on areas most in need of repair and defects potentially affecting people’s safety.
“Of course, our teams continue to monitor roads regularly but they can’t be everywhere at once, and we really appreciate it when public-spirited residents report defects they spot - whether that’s a pothole, a streetlight that’s out, or overgrown foliage causing an obstruction.”
Report road and pavement defects at http://www.buckscc.gov.uk/transport/tell-tfb/ .