Man's £690 repair bill after driving over pothole council were about to fix


Jonathan Cann, drove over a pothole on January 24, a day before it was repaired by the council. - Credit: Supplied

A man who forked out £690 to fix his car after driving over a pothole was denied compensation as the council had already ordered the road to be repaired.

Jonathan Cann, 58, lives in Freethorpe but was driving south of Beccles on Polls Lane when he ran over the pothole on January 24.

The incident resulted in him having to pay £690 to a garage to get two wheels and tyres repaired.

Mr Cann tried to claim compensation for the damage from Suffolk Highways who own the road but, in a letter written to him, the council say they are not liable because they were alerted to the pothole on January 16, inspected the road on January 20 where a 20-day working day repair was issued and then repaired on January 25.

jonathan cann

Jonathan Cann felt like the response from the council was 'a bit harsh'. - Credit: Supplied

Recalling the incident, Mr Cann said: "I was driving and then there was a sudden bang.

"I noticed I had run over a pothole and both the tyres and wheels had stopped working.


The small pothole caused extensive damage to the wheels and tyres of Mr Cann's car. - Credit: Supplied

"I had to take the car to a local garage and paid £690 for the new tyres and wheels.

Most Read

"I then sent off documents to Suffolk Highways for a claim and was angry to discover it had been rejected.

"It's a bit harsh.

"I've not been fit to work for two months, I have chronic gout and I'm on Universal Credit.

"I'm paying all this money for a Suffolk Highways problem it just seems unjust and not fair."

Polls Lane in Beccles. Picture: Danielle Booden

The pothole has since been repaired by Suffolk Highways. Picture: Danielle Booden - Credit: Danielle Booden

A spokeswoman for Suffolk Highways said that the council are not liable for vehicle damage while repairs are being awaited on a road.

They said: "Suffolk Highways maintains the highway in accordance with the criteria set out in the Highway Maintenance Operation Plan (HMOP).

"The HMOP takes into account prioritising repairs for expected traffic volumes and the likely danger to life.

"Where possible, repairs are planned geographically to promote cost effectiveness and longevity.

"Unfortunately, vehicle damage may occur whilst repairs are awaited, however this does not make the council liable to settle claims.

"Suffolk Highways was made aware of the pothole on January 16 and ordered a repair to take place within 20 working days, in accordance with our Highway Maintenance Operational Plan.

"The incident occurred on January 24, which falls within the reasonable repair period for this type of defect.

"In this instance it has been deemed unreasonable for repairs to have been made prior to the incident."

Polls Lane in Beccles. Picture: Danielle Booden

Polls Lane in Beccles. Picture: Danielle Booden - Credit: Danielle Booden