‘Fill That Hole’ relaunch
It’s 2007, the first iPhone has just been released, ‘credit crunch’ sounds more like a breakfast cereal than an economic catastrophe, and a brand new cutting-edge online tool is launched to help people report potholes to their council: Fill That Hole is born.
Sixteen years and 200,000 pothole reports later, the hugely popular tool has been refreshed and relaunched, helping cyclists – and pedestrians, drivers and everyone who uses the roads – to easily report potholes for decades to come. Try it out today and help make your local roads a little safer.
Potholes can cause serious injury and even death
Potholes are dangerous for everyone, but as Cycling UK has recently highlighted, they pose a particular risk to people cycling. We know that 255 people have been seriously injured or killed due to road defects in the last seven years, but the real number of injuries is likely far higher given these figures only include reports which reach the police.
It’s therefore little wonder Fill That Hole has proved so popular over the years, especially as councils have seen their roads maintenance budgets increasingly squeezed, worsening the nation’s pothole crisis.
However, technology has moved on since 2007, which is why Cycling UK is relaunching Fill That Hole, with support from Cycle SOS, to ensure it’s easy to use, gets reports to the right places, and can help us campaign for increased investment in local roads maintenance.
Report all road hazards in one place
The new website is mobile friendly, meaning there’s no need to download a separate app, and is optimised for each local authority, ensuring councils can prioritise the most urgent potholes for repair. What’s more, it’ll also let you report other problems that could pose a risk when you’re cycling, such as broken traffic lights, incorrect or damaged signage, or debris on the road.
Almost all councils accept reports through the new site, and for the small minority that don’t, the tool will link you directly to the council’s website, meaning that even when you don’t know what council you’re in, Fill That Hole is the perfect one-stop-shop for reporting road hazards.
It will also allow us to monitor how potholes impact different road users for the first time – anonymous data will let our campaigns team know the rate of injury or damage caused by potholes for different road users, helping power our push for more long-term funding for local roads maintenance.
If you want to help Cycling UK fight the blight of potholes, please use Fill That Hole to report potholes and road defects when you see them – you may just save another cyclist from a serious injury.
Road maintenance needs to be planned before roads become dangerous
Reporting potholes alone isn’t enough to solve the crisis. Cycling UK has for years been campaigning for long-term funding so that highways authorities can properly plan their road maintenance and resurface roads before they become dangerous – which is also much more cost effective than playing whack-a-hole with crumbing roads.
We thoroughly welcomed the recent 10-year roads maintenance funding commitment in England, even if our roads budgets are still too heavily weighted towards trunk and A-road. Although the commitment doesn’t represent a significant increase in terms of annual funding, the long-term nature means it’s more important than ever to flag up potholes with your authority so that they can plan out repairs and resurfacing.
So whether you’re out on a weekend ride, heading on a wintery commute, or just popping to the shops, take a moment to report any potholes you come across on Fill That Hole, and help make our roads that little bit safer.