Nearly 2000 NI motorists received road defect damage compensation

By Gary Adair

Compensation totalling nearly £495,358.04 has been paid to 1,935 motorists in Northern Ireland who suffered damage to their vehicles as a result of potholes and other road defects in the past 2 years.

The figures were released by the Department for Infrastructure following a request under the Freedom of Information Act. The compensation, totalling nearly £500,000 was paid in respect of compensation claims settled between 1st January 2016 and 30th November 2017. The top 3 roads for the number of compensation payments in respect of defects in 2017 were found in Dunmurry (108), Newry (97) and Magherafelt (80).

The condition of Northern Ireland roads is expected to get worse. It has been estimated that it would take over £1billion to remedy all of the current defects, but only £63million has been allocated for this year's maintenance budget. Road expert Wesley Johnston says the situation is "getting worse progressively over time, because each year we are under spending on maintenance so that adds to the deficit."