Half of motorists have had pothole problems

Almost half of Scotland's motorists have had their vehicles damaged by potholes over the last two years.

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The country topped a UK league table for pothole damage, compiled by the AA.

The motoring organisation branded the state of the UK's roads a "national embarrassment", as it revealed that the number of pothole-related insurance claims had more than doubled in just a year.

A campaign by the Evening Times to improve the state of the roads in and around Glasgow has been running since 2009.

Glasgow City Council this month announced it is to spend £36 million over the next two years to deal with the problem.

The AA surveyed more than 22,000 AA members around the UK, of which 1957 were in Scotland.

It found that 44% of drivers in Scotland said damaged road surfaces had caused them problems in the last two years.

Scotland was followed by the north-west and north-east of England, where about 35% of motorists said they had experienced pothole trouble.

Tyres and wheels bore the brunt of the damage, with 16% of respondents in Scotland reporting damaged tyres and 8% sustaining damage to both tyre and wheel.

Thirteen per cent had their tracking knocked out of alignment as well as damage to the wheel and tyre.

Five people said the incident resulted in them crashing into anther vehicle or object.

AA patrolman Andy Smith said: "It's no surprise that drivers in Scotland have taken the biggest pothole hit but AA patrols report that as soon as you get off the main road in many rural areas, it's like being on an Alpine mountain pass – you're often in first gear traversing huge craters.

"If you see one up ahead, slow down and try to avoid swerving round it as you risk having a more serious accident.

"Regularly check your tyre pressures and look for any bulges, nicks or unusual tyre wear, which could spell pothole trouble.

"If in any doubt, get them checked at a garage or tyre specialist."

AA president Edmund King said: "The fact that close to half of our members in Scotland have had their car damaged by potholes is a damning indictment of the state of our roads – they're a national embarrassment.

"More broadly it doesn't reflect well on the standing of our nation in the eyes of tourists and foreign investors.

"A decent road infrastructure must be a minimum requirement for a progressive 21st century country."

The AA/Populus survey was conducted online between January 21 and 25.

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