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WE'VE all heard of the Ghostbusters.

But now there's a new team on the prowl in towns across Hampshire - to tackle the pothole plague causing misery to thousands of motorists.

Dubbed the “Pothole Busters” they are being drafted in to carry out emergency repairs across more than 5,000 miles of roads in the county.

A total of 80 "gangs" of workers - 60 per cent more than normal - are being equipped to carry out the urgent work.

And while they may not have proton packs on their backs, they will be armed with specialist jetpatcher machines to help mend damage caused to the roads after the heaviest rainfall in Hampshire in 250 years.

"Pothole Buster" signs are appearing on rural roads across the county as the emergency work gets underway.

The move comes after Hampshire County Council was handed £11.5million from the Government to carry out repairs after weeks of rain and flooding earlier this year.

Council bosses say that money will help - but the long term cost will be far higher and could even reach £63million.

As well as the roads, more than 300 locations across the county are thought to need repairs while money is also needed for flood and coastal defence work.

Councillor Seán Woodward, Executive Member for Economy, Transport and Environment, said that repair work is being carefully prioritised. “We are re-prioritising all repairs to the worst affected roads so that we tackle the most serious defects first.

“These extra gangs, extra equipment and additional signing have been put in place and work has begun, with efforts concentrated on emergency defects and safety work.”

The true cost of flooding in Hampshire will be laid bare at a meeting of the county council's cabinet today.

Council Leader Roy Perry said the council would continue its representations to Government for more money.

He said: “Getting £11.5million is a really helpful first- step from Government and we'll be bidding for more resources, bearing in mind we estimate that another £25million, or more, is needed to fix damaged roads alone.

"We are committed to continuing to fund an enhanced maintenance programme to improve the resilience of our 5,000 miles of roads, which, together with resources we are planning to spend in the recent budget, is testimony to the importance we attach to investing in Hampshire.”