ACF Car Finance have just issued a note on the growing problem of road potholes causing damage to cars. ACF Car Finance says that Britain’s tatty tarmac is costing it thousands of pounds each month to repair and bring vehicles back up to showroom condition, with more than 60 percent of cars on the road likely to show evidence of damage consistent with driving over potholes.
“We are talking here about cars which are generally two or three years old, but which bear the scars of much longer life,” said Mark Jones, the company’s manager of operations and logistics. “Of the hundreds of cars we acquire each month, around six out of every ten need some type of remedial work for damage which is likely to be pothole-related,” he says.
Paint chips, dented wheel rims and bulging tyre walls are now very common, reports Mark, and there are also many instances of damage to shock absorbers and suspension systems.
Potholes can also knock the car’s steering out of alignment and present a severe driving hazard which might only come to light in an emergency, he added.
A large number of the faults are only revealed when a car undergoes ACF Car Finance’s 136-point safety and mechanical check which, due to its thoroughness, was recently accredited by the RAC.
“We like to present the cars we sell in a condition which is as close to factory-fresh as possible, so our inspection process delves deeply for anything needing attention,” said Mark.
“We carefully hand-pick every one of our vehicles, so the national percentage of pothole damaged cars could be much higher than the sixty percent we experience,” he observes.
The company, which operates showrooms near many major UK cities, says that this winter is likely to see a further worsening of Britain’s increasingly blighted roads.
“While councils continue slashing their repair budgets, we are forced to increase our allocation of funds for repairing damage of the type caused by potholes,” said Mark.
“I think our experience suggests that anyone buying a car privately ought to get an independent inspection carried out to uncover any hidden pothole damage,” he commented.