Record £130m spent repairing NI’s roads in 2013/14
Part of the reason for the record spend – up £20m from the previous financial year - may be the battering the roads have taken from the weather.
Regional Development Minister Danny Kennedy confirmed that the total bill for structural maintenance in the financial year just ended was around £130m - £20m higher than 2012 and £10m higher than the previous record.
Kennedy said the increase was partly due to the inclement weather: "There is no doubt the weather can have a significant impact on the condition of our road network. The storms and associated tidal surges earlier in the year caused significant damage to coastal roads and their associated defences."
He said his department anticipated the cost of carrying out storm damage repairs would amount to around £3.5m, but could be more. Work at some of the locations is still on-going, and in a few cases will not be completed until later in the year.
Northern Ireland’s roads network comprises some 25,000km in total and Kennedy adds that in general weather has little or no impact:
"However, in general, well-maintained roads in good condition suffer relatively little weather related damage. In seeking to maintain the network and offset weather-related damage, my department anticipates it will have spent some £130m on structural maintenance in 2013/14.
"This will be a record level of expenditure, showing an increase of some £20m on the previous year, and some £10m higher than the previous record of £120m set in 2011/12."