It’s been revealed by the AA that a “pothole epidemic” caused by the ‘Beast From The East’ led to the highest number of vehicle breakdown calls in 15 years. 2018 has been a year of weather extremes, ranging from blistering cold to the hottest summer on record. The company’s core earnings in the vehicle recovery industry dropped 17% in the six months to the end of July. This happened because of the increased costs needed to use third-party garages to contain the amount of broken down cars.
AA Chief Executive, Simon Breakwell, said “the first half of the financial year has seen exceptional weather conditions, from extreme cold and snow in February and March, to the hottest summer in recent memory, with the severe winter also creating a pothole epidemic on the UK’s roads. All this led to a 15-year high in the number of breakdowns we serviced.”
“Against this backdrop, I am extremely proud of our achievements and to be reporting results in line with our guidance as we continue to build resilience throughout the business.”
AA has invested a lot of money into its roadside business to increase company-owned patrols. The money has also gone towards improving the mobile-app services for car breakdowns. Breakwell has been responsible for the investment, as he took on the position last year.
Breakwell set up a new strategy in February as AA announced plans to pay lower dividends and forecast lower profit for 2019. The company reported trading earnings before tax, depreciation, interest and amortisation of £161 million for the six-month period. This was down from £193
Santeri Viinamäki [CC BY-SA 4.0]