Five pothole claims in Mid Ulster every week

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Potholes on Mid Ulster’s crumbling network of roads have forced the government to stump up approximately £143,000 in damages over the past four years.

Some 981 compensation claims to cover the cost of vehicle damage and injuries were settled in the Mid Ulster district, which means that approximately five claims a week have been lodged by local motorists.

The figures for Mid Ulster North, which covers Cookstown and Magherafelt, were the third highest in Northern Ireland, after Newry Mourne and Down, and Lisburn and Castlereagh.

Concerns have been raised by local politicians that the Mid Ulster district is suffering from a pothole epidemic after underinvestment and poor maintenance in the road network. Last year, a total of 210 claims were made locally.

According to the RAC, the average settlement amount for a successful pothole claim rose last year to £286.

Minister for the Department of Infrastructure Chris Hazzard said the claims included compensation for damage incurred on the footway and carriageway due to defects and other issues.

A department spokesperson added: “The department thoroughly investigates all claims and considers the evidence and circumstances related to each case before deciding whether to reject or settle a claim.”