Potholes could take two days longer to be repaired under new Northants County Council scheme

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Potholes in the county’s residential roads which are deemed “very likely” to cause injury or damage may soon take seven days to make good rather than the current five days.

The change is contained in a review of the road maintenance scheme by Northamptonshire County Council’s highways department.

It means that the response to potholes deeper than 10cm on residential streets – the biggest of which are currently repaired within five days – will be downgraded so that the timescale is seven days.

Potholes more than 10cm deep are acknowledged in Northamptonshire Highways’ new ‘code’ to be a serious danger, with the likelihood of injury or damage caused by such a hole deemed ‘very likely’.

Emergencies such as sinkholes and bridge collapses will, as now, be responded to urgently.

Explaining the overall changes in a report to councillors, David Grindley, of the highways team, said repairs would be approved on a case-by-case basis, rather than being determined strictly by the dimensions of the hole.

He said: “The actual decision as to what level of repair, if any, is required, will be based on a specific assessment of the risk of the defect.”

Training will be undertaken by highways inspectors in the implementation of the new code.

Mr Girindley says this will be to minimise potential errors in classifying defects.

It will therefore “reduce risk to highway users and to the highway authority in its statutory duty to maintain the highway,” he said.

A previous version of this article said it could take seven times longer for potholes to be repaired. We are happy to correct the error and apologise for the mistake.