THEY may be a minor inconvenience or a major headache – but they always prompt comment.
Now the true extent and impact of Britain’s many miles of roadworks is revealed today by roadside recovery firm Britannia Rescue.
The company, which has offices at Folly Hall Mills in Huddersfield, said the average driver clocks up almost 240 miles a year trying to avoid roadworks or following diversions – adding an extra 43 minutes to their driving time on average every week.
And in Kirklees they revealed there were 239 sets of roadworks under way at any one time.
A Freedom of Information request made by Britannia Rescue to local authority highways departments across the UK reveals there are 19,000 roadworks currently under way in the UK and that they stretch 1,434 miles – the length of Land’s End to John O’Groats and back again.
In Kirklees, there are 239 roadwork projects of varying sizes ongoing – 26 of them for the local council and 213 for utilities such as water, gas, electricity and telecoms.
That compares with just nine schemes of all sizes across Calderdale.
The A62 Leeds Road emerged as the route where the most roadworks took place in Kirklees over the past five years – with 361 separate works, all of which have been completed.
A survey of drivers across the UK by Britannia Rescue showed that 24% were forced to change their route to avoid road works.
Despite the number of roadworks, 22% of drivers polled believe that highway repairs actually make the quality of the roads worse – while 61% think the quality of Britain’s roads in general is declining.