Over the past three financial years, more than £90,000 has been paid out by Aylesbury Vale District Council in motor vehicle and public liability claims, a Freedom of Information request by the Bucks Herald revealed, while Bucks County Council has paid nearly £80,000.
The majority of motor vehicle claims against the district council follow recycling and waste collection vehicles causing damage around the Vale, including bumping wing mirrors and damaging walls and gates. These types of claims cost the council £28,873 in 2010/11, £22,970 in 2011/12 and, as of January 10, £14,964 in 2012/13.
The council said: “AVDC ensure that all their drivers undertake driver training and awareness courses every year. The recent introduction of technology in vehicles has also prevented claims. In addition, all third party claims are fully investigated by AVDC staff and the officers concerned and the council’s insurers and inspectors are also involved where appropriate.”
In one injury claim in 2011/12, someone claimed £7,551 from the district council following an injury they suffered because of a ‘defective surface’ in a park.
Of the nearly £80,000 paid out by the county council since 2010/11, £68,295 was highways related claims in 2010/11. Since then the council paid out £8,095 for all claims in 2011/12 and, as of February 5, £2,435 in 2012/13.
Rosemary Bryant, transformation manager at Transport for Bucks, said: “The reason the claims for public liability were high in 2010/11 is that we had a severe winter and were still suffering the effects of the previous winter. We did settle a number of claims but there are still around 25 claims outstanding for the year 2011/12 which may yet increase the figure given.”
In 2010/11 the county council also paid out £270 for school related claims and £250 for waste site claims. In 2011/12 £5,302 was paid out for highways claims and £2,792 for school related claims.
The roads that have cost the county council the most have also been revealed. Bridgeway in Cuddington cost the authority £2,128 in claims in 2010/11 and in the same year £624 was paid out for claims relating to Aylesbury Road in Great Missenden.