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Scotland's crumbling roads

Fix potholes to help businesses, says small firms chief

Craters in Leith Walk, Edinburgh. The city has the biggest problem in the UK

Scotland’s crumbling road network is impacting on the economy and fixing it would win support from the country’s businesses, it was said today.

Figures show Scotland has the worst pothole problem in the UK and Edinburgh comes top of the Scottish league.

Scottish councils spent almost £27 million to repair potholes last year and more than £226,000 in compensation to those who’ve had their car damaged. Across the UK £3.1m has been spent on compensation.

A freedom of information request by reveals 154,310 potholes were reported to Scottish councils in 2016 – more than in any other UK region.

The Society of Chief Officers of Transportation in Scotland (SCOTS) to SPICe, the Scottish Parliament’s independent information centre, estimated the cost of meeting the backlog of repairs to Scotland’s roads at £1.67 billion.

Andy Willox, the Federation of Small Businesses’ (FSB) Scottish policy convenor, said: “Scotland’s local roads are in an unacceptably poor condition and will continue to decline. Addressing this sort of unglamorous but chronic problem would win the First Minister plaudits amongst Scotland’s smaller firms.”

Top 5 local authority areas within Scotland with the biggest pothole problem

Local authority area

No. of potholes reported

£ spent on repairs

£ spent on compensation

City of Edinburgh








Dumfries & Galloway




Glasgow City




Perth & Kinross





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