POTHOLES on the roads around a local village have multiplied alarmingly following January's big freeze, prompting an outcry from residents and politicians.
Motorists have called for urgent repairs to be carried out on the roads around Castlecaulfield, after it emerged there was a pot-hole for every hundred yards of road surface.
“The surface on these roads is atrocious,” said one Galbally resident. “I counted about 15 large holes on a mile long stretch on my way home last night.
“This is almost one every hundred yards. Some of them are large enough to knock the car off its course.
“I use the back-roads around Castlecaulfield to avoid the heavy traffic on the A4 but after my last journey I’ve vowed to risk the rush-hour traffic on the A4.”Fermanagh and South Tyrone MLA Tom Elliott has branded local roads the worst in Northern Ireland.
He claimed there was more yellow marking on the roads around Castlecaulfield than tarmac.
“I have witnessed at first hand the state of many of our rural roads,” he said.
“Upon entering Castlecaulfield on the Old Caulfield Road, in a short distance, there are over 50 yellow marks denoting potholes, and the Killyharry Road due to construction traffic is in an appalling state.”
The UUP representative claimed the 15m for road maintenance announced by Roads Minister Conor Murphy was insufficient to cover the costs of A class roads, never mind minor roads.
“It has been widely acknowledged that funding for road maintenance has been below the level required to maintain the network in satisfactory condition,” he said.
“Unless the Executive dedicates resources to mending our roads now, they will be storing up major problems for the future. It is recognised that 105m is required per year to maintain our strategically important roads network but only 85m has been allocated in this financial year.
“The present policy is not sustainable and better economic solutions should be adopted rather than patching and surface dressing. I fear with public spending cuts in every Department the roads will deteriorate further.”