No “avoiding puddles” in the North East – Rankings reveal smoothest roads


With the AA advising drivers to “avoid puddles” after a record month for breakdowns caused by potholes, new rankings, conducted by Lexham Insurance, explore the best spots in the country for evading potholes.

  • The North East comes out on top, with 96% of motorways, B and C roads in the North East not currently needing to be considered for improvement according to 2023 reports – the fewest of all regions across the country.
  • The North East also took the top spot for having the fewest amber and red classified roads compared to the rest of the country.
  • Data suggests that roads in the East Midlands require the most improvement, with over a third (38%) of A roads classified as amber or red, as well as 42% of B and C roads.

With almost half of respondents to a RAC survey earlier this year citing the condition of their local roads as their biggest motoring concern, and local residents sharing their discontent with potholes in increasingly creative ways, it is clear that potholes are causing a major issue across the nation – something North Eastern motorists may have less to worry about compared to other regions across the UK. Similarly, Yorkshire and the Humber and the West Midlands claim some of the lowest numbers of red and amber-classified roads in the country.

While poor road conditions are a hazard for all motorists, Brett Tinkley, Lexham Insurance’s marketing manager explains why having a smooth surface to ride on is especially important for motorcyclists, as 1 in 5 claim to have had an accident or sustained damage to their bike as a result of hitting a pothole, Riding over potholes isn’t just uncomfortable – it can do lasting damage to your tyres and suspension, and in more severe cases can even result in a jolt so hard that you’re thrown from your bike.

“While we all like to think we’ll see bigger potholes coming with enough time to get around them, the truth is that some of the UK’s roads are so riddled with issues that you’re often looking at a choice between a bad route ahead and an even worse one. Unless you’re in the North East, that is, where we’ve learned that bikers have the best chance of having a much smoother journey!”

Lexham Insurance’s rankings also found that the North East experiences fewer motorcyclist casualties overall than the rest of England, and is joint safest (alongside Scotland) when considering ONS casualty figures per 1,000 bikers – making it a perfect location for bikers who may still be wary on the road. 

Motorcyclists are advised to take precautions such as wearing the correct gear, staying alert for potential hazards, and having the right insurance policy in place to ensure safety on the road.

Lexham Insurance recently ranked regions across the UK to discover the best spots for motorcyclists. These included the best region for the smoothest journeys and the place most likely to give motorcyclists rain-free rides.

Visit the Bike Matters blog to read Lexham Insurance’s regional rankings in full.

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