Cycle retail goliath Halfords has reported a rise of almost a third in its bike repair service over the past year from cyclists seeking fixes for their wheels, tyres and forks.
Owners coming into stores have been blaming pot holes and poor road surfaces, according to the retailer, which cites the rise in pothole reports to the CTC – more have been reported to local councils in the first six months of 2013 than the whole of 2012.
Finding some cheer for cyclists in the Government’s recent Spending Review, Halfords’ head of cycles Karen Bellairs said: “We welcome the Government’s commitment to resolving this problem and making sure the roads are safe to ride on, now all road users would like to see some action.
"Potholes are a problem for everyone but particularly cyclists and especially at this time of year when people like to get out on their bikes.
“Our mechanics report a significant rise in the number of cycles coming in for repairs which owners are blaming on potholes or disintegrating and uneven highway surfaces.”
The peril caused by potholes to cyclists has even led to riders creating their own warning signal, dropping their hand down the side of the bike, so others behind are aware of the potential hazard.
Bellairs added: “The danger of coming off of a bike and risking serious injury is all too evident. The roads should be safe for cyclists and motorists alike. We’re asking The Highway Authority and Councils to pay particular attention to repairs at the side of the road where cyclists travel and also cycle paths which have been the subject of complaint.”
Latest Department of Transport figures reveal that 1,110 out of 13,000 reported cycling accidents, included "loss of control", "swerving" or "sudden braking" as contributory factors. A British Cycling survey by its members showed that 12 per cent of accidents were caused by a “defective stretch of road,” or “spillage” or “obstruction in the cyclist’s path”.