Bikers aiming to make a hole lot of trouble

Colin Mahoney, Chairman of the British Bikers Association
Colin Mahoney, Chairman of the British Bikers Association

A Leyland-based motorcycle group is ‘filling in’ its members with a new nationwide campaign focusing on pesky potholes.

The British Biker’s Association, which has its base in the town, has launched a new smartphone ‘app’ for riders to report potholes and make other road users aware of which areas to avoid.

BBA founder Colin Mahoney, from Leyland, said: “I’ve been in the legal industry for 20 years and I’m also an avid motorcyclist.

“I see my fellow riders injured on the roads on an almost weekly basis, so I’ve decided to do something about it, and especially the pothole situation.”

He’s also using the new ‘report a pothole’ feature to show councils that the situation is serious.

“We want councils to get involved really,” Mr Mahoney said. “We want to say to the local authorities, ‘we know you’re cash strapped, but if we can provide you with a solution where it would only cost £50 to fill a pothole, what’s your excuse?’

“It would save them thousands of pounds in the long-run when you think about insurance and damage caused when a motorcyclist is killed or injured because they’ve come off their bike after going over a pothole.”

The association is currently in talks with a manufacturer to provide a cheap way of repairing potholes, and Mr Mahoney is also using his background in the legal industry to ‘shame’ councils into living up to their responsibilities.

He said: “We want to use the smartphone app to ramp up the pressure on councils, and to hopefully put a stop to this very serious issue.

“As well as letting our members know about where the potholes are, the idea is also to use that information to relay to councils to get it fixed.

“The BBA is tackling this issue head on by placing councils on 14 days notice of potholes that have been uploaded to our website.

“If nothing has been done to deal with the problem after this period has elapsed, then we will contact their insurers with the details.”

He added: “I just think the current situation on our roads is absolutely inexcusable; allowing the cracks, gaping holes and uneven surfaces that make riding out a real lottery.”

County Coun Marcus Johnstone, cabinet member for environment, planning and cultural services at Lancashire County Council, said: “Making sure roads are in good condition is one of our priorities. We aim to fix large potholes, or those on very busy routes, within three days of them being reported, with others being repaired within seven days.”