Council on track to permanently repair more than 5,000 potholes in a year

Midlothian Council is on track to permanently repair 5,000 potholes in a year with its new JCB Pothole Pro machine, more than double the target.

National Pothole Day

Speaking on National Pothole Day (Monday 15 January), the council’s Roads and Transportation Service Manager, Wayne Clark said the 13-tonne digger was living up to its name.

The Tarminator

He said: “We called it ‘The Tarminator’ after a public competition and it’s certainly ‘annihilating’ a much greater number of potholes than we expected.

Exceeding expectations

“Our target was to use the machine to permanently repair 2,000 potholes in its first year from May 2023 to May of this year but we’re easily on track to smash the 5,000 mark.”

Three-in-one solution

The JCB Pothole Pro is a three-in-one solution specifically designed to take on any pothole repair, large or small. 

Cuts, crops and cleans

It cuts away damaged road surface, crops the edges of the cavity and cleans it out within eight minutes. 

From half-a-day to half-an-hour

A five-person crew then prepares, fills, and rollers the repair sealing it permanently, all within half an hour. Conventional methods would take half a day to do fix the same pothole temporarily. 

Permanent repairs

Wayne added: “And these are permanent repairs that should last the lifetime of the road.”

Significant investment

The JCB was bought as part of a £780,000 capital investment to replace outdated roads machinery.

£12.5m to be spent over 5 years

The council also recently completed a £5 million, two-year programme to resurface residential streets. An additional capital budget of £12.5m is to be spent over the next five years to continue to upgrade the residential road network.

Ongoing challenge

Wayne said that while the Pothole Pro was a great addition to the council’s ‘arsenal’ of equipment, it is an ongoing challenge to tackle potholes across 640 kilometres and growing of kilometres of roads maintained the council.

Emergency repairs within 24 hours

He said: “That’s why we continue to have a robust system in place to inspect, prioritise and repair potholes with emergency pothole repairs carried out within 24 hrs.”

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15 Jan 2024