Claims Company Pushes for Safer Pavements

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National Accident Helpline urges local councils to put more resources into pavement maintenance.

Councils in England should increase their spending on pavement maintenance to reduce the number of slip, trip and falling accidents, says a spokesperson for the National Accident Helpline.

Improved pavement repairs will also reduce the cost to councils of paying compensation to people who have slipped over in the street, according the claims management company.

John Campbell, legal director at no win no fee claims company National Accident Helpline, said: 'Not only are badly maintained pavements a danger to the public, they are also costing councils, and therefore the general public, tens of millions a year in compensation payouts.

'Councils should therefore be investing more, rather than less, on pavement repairs in these difficult economic times,' he said.

Figures released last week showed that Councils in England have paid out more than £82m in compensation over the past five years to people who have injured themselves as a result of tripping on uneven paving in the street.

The average compensation payment across the 92 councils who responded to a Freedom of Information request by the Liberal Democrats was £833,269 over five years.

Improved pavement maintenance appears to help reduce the number of claims made against councils. Gloucestershire County Council has made significant improvements to their pavements, spending 1.5 million last year on pavement maintenance and repairs.

The number of pavement-related compensation claims made against the council subsequently reduced from a high of 66 claims in 2007/8 to 48 claims in 2008/9.

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Corinne Mansfield
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