TECHNOLOGY which can quickly repair potholes and make roads ‘good as new’ has been developed by an East Lancashire firm.

The equipment, nicknamed ‘the frying bedstead’, heats up both the pothole and road surface to 200 degrees centigrade prior to repairs.

It has been thought up by engineers at Advanced Combustion Engineering Ltd, based in Haslingden.

Bosses at the 25-year-old firm, which employs 12 fabricators, welders, electricians and gas engineers at its base on Commerce Street, hope to sell it to highways authorities who face a hefty backlog of pothole repairs due to the harsh weather conditions.

In Lancashire alone, an extra 6,000 potholes have been reported to the county council over the past year, with diminishing budgets leaving councils facing a difficult task to keep on top of repairs.

Mike Pollitt is managing director of the firm, which also manufactures heating combustion equipment for other industries such as cereal producers, textile companies and metal fabricators.

He said: “Normally when you see potholes repaired, the water is brushed out of the pothole, some Tarmac is shovelled off a flat bed truck into it and then it’s rolled.

“The Tarmac and the road surface are at different temperatures so the materials and the road aren’t bonded.

“Our equipment is placed over the replacement Tarmac and the pothole with the infra-red heat source bringing the materials and the hole up to the same extreme temperature, meaning the bond is much stronger.”

Mr Pollitt and his team are now marketing their Infra-red Tarmac Pothole Repairer but will not be branding it ‘the frying bedstead’.“That’s a name me and the lads gave it because of its appearance, although it does roll off the tongue,” he said.