NEW research from a breakdown company has revealed over half of drivers in Southampton would pay higher taxes to fix potholes.

It has been announced by Green Flag that the top concern for 59 percent of motorists are potholes, beating fast drivers, slow drivers and lack of signposting.

The study surveyed up to 100 people in Southampton and found drivers in the city encountered approximately seven potholes per trip. Green Flag found 83 percent of drivers in Southampton wished councils would do more about potholes and 44 percent would be willing to pay more in taxes or tolls for pothole-free roads.

It also revealed just 32 percent of drivers know how to check their tyres for signs of damage, with the average motorist spending £205 per year on vehicle repairs. This totalled approximately £4.09 billion across the nation each year.

A further 48 percent reported their cars have been damaged by potholes, with 26 percent claiming they have experienced tyre damage and 19 percent have faced suspension damage.

Simon Henrick at Green Flag commented: “The problem of potholes on UK roads means there is an increased risk of car damage.

"With this in mind, it is important to stay safe when driving and to regularly check your vehicle and tyres for damage.”

He added the company is “doing all we can to ensure drivers know how to carry out basic safety checks before a journey and carry out simple maintenance to their vehicles.”The study also discovered 46 percent of Southampton motorists say they avoid certain roads in the city due to potholes and on average drivers would be willing to add three miles per trip to avoid encountering potholes.

As previously reported in the Echo, Southampton’s roads received a 1.7million funding boost, of which £100,000 was sidelined specifically for potholes.

Green Flag has issued a guide to drivers advising them how to change a tyre, informing motorists to find a safe place to stop, such as the hard shoulder, when they noticed a flat tyre.

It continues to advise drivers to remove the wheel by loosening the wheel nuts with the wheel wrench and to call a breakdown provider if the wheel cannot be removed.