If you consider a pothole to be an emergency safety issue, please call 01908 252353 (office hours) or 01908 226699 out of hours.

Report a pothole

How potholes form

A pothole appears when the road surface has been worn away and a hollow appears. Potholes can form quickly and can be a hazard to people using the highways.

Water seeps into small cracks in the surface and over time this can worsen. Water pressure and vehicle movements can cause a pothole to increase in size very quickly. During the winter months surface water freezes and expands then thaws repeatedly in the road surface helping to make any gaps bigger.

As traffic moves over the weakened area it causes more material to become loose and eventually a pothole is created.

Find out more about the different types of surface defect in our Road Defects - Mini Guide. 

We investigate all potholes reported to us and our highways inspectors check the road network throughout the week. For major routes and roads, we also carry out monthly safety inspections. 

Repairs are planned based on several factors, we look at the pothole and assess if it is a safety issue that needs to be repaired quickly or whether it can be added to a programme of works planned for a later date which may include a larger section of resurfacing rather than a minor repair.

We use this way of assessing potholes to ensure that those considered 'safety critical' are dealt with quickly. This may involve doing a temporary repair to make it safe and we'll return to do a more permanent repair later on. 

Potholes can appear in between inspections, especially over winter due to the weather conditions, so please do report any you see on the roads and footways using the Report It section or call 01908 252353.

More information about the types of surface treatment we use are in our Road Surface Treatment - Mini Guide.

You can watch a pothole being repaired on our You Tube channel