A survey has revealed that a third of AA members have suffered damage to their cars from potholes over the last two years, while nearly six in 10 motorists in the North East said roads in the region were worse than they were a year ago.
A third of motorists rated the overall surface condition of their local roads as poor, very poor or terrible in the AA/Populus survey of nearly 23,000 drivers.
Only 10% of those polled rated their local roads very good or excellent, with the lowest ratings going to Scotland, Yorkshire and Humberside.
In north-east England, 59% said conditions were worse, while those saying the roads had improved were greatest in Wales and London.
"This spring our patrols are telling us that potholes are popping up faster than daffodils. This reflects the effects of very wet and frosty weather on poor road surfaces.
"Our findings are deeply worrying and show that UK drivers are once again experiencing a bad pothole season after a lull last spring - perhaps with worse to come. The slight let-up in potholes this time last year may have been just a blip in the annual pothole blight that seems to beset us each spring.
"Ring-fenced finance must be found to plug an increasing gap in highway budgets."
More top news
Sunderland Football Club's Chief Executive has left the club, after a decision by the new owners to make the position of CEO redundant
A minute's silence has been held for Chloe Rutherford and Liam Curry, and other victims of the Manchester terror attack in South Shields
Newcastle United winger Rolando Aarons and his mother have been spared jail after admitting affray over a brawl in a Newcastle bar