New motorway pothole regime under fire

Highways Reporters

Highways Agency plans to introduce new rules that require contractors to carry out emergency repairs only if potholes are more than 4cm deep or 15cm wide have come under fire from the industry.

The Road Surface Treatments Association fear that the new guidelines could result in motorways and trunk roads not being fit for purpose.

The new rules are a cost saving measure and counteract previous requirements that contractors must ensure that the road gave an ‘even, comfortable and quiet’ ride and called for minor defects to be repaired within 24 hours.

But the RSTA believe that the new instructions could prove to be an own goal with the Highways Agency having to pay more in repair bills and insurance claims.

Shallow pot holes can quickly become deeper and present a significant hazard to motorists particularly as they will be travelling at high speed.

“This is a short-sighted approach that could result in significant deterioration in the condition of and safety of motorways and trunk roads”, said Howard Robinson, RSTA chief executive.

“It means that there will be less preventative maintenance which will ultimately cost the Highways Agency more. It costs of £2 m2 to surface dress and maintain a road but costs £75 m2 to repair potholes. There is also the potential safety issue of motorists swerving from one lane to another as they try to avoid a pothole.”

The Highways Agency aims to implement the new instructions in the West Country later this year and then introduce it nationally in 2015.

It mirrors similar moves by local authorities who have re-designated a pothole as only being a pothole if it is 4cm or deeper. This is double the previous designation of 2cm.

“We all know about the problem of potholes that is endemic throughout our local road network. Now we could be faced with our national trunk road network facing the same shortfall in preventative maintenance,” warned Robinson.
Highways jobs

Definitive Map Manager

Cambridgeshire County Council
£32,825 - £35,401
This role is based within the Highways Service at Cambridgeshire County Council and provides an unusual and... Cambridgeshire
Recuriter: Cambridgeshire County Council

Bridge Park Operations Manager

Brent Council
£38,799 - £41,706 p.a. inc.
This is an exciting opportunity to play a key role in managing the operations and contributing towards the... Brentford (City/Town), London (Greater)
Recuriter: Brent Council

Assistant Engineer

Cambridgeshire County Council
£21,074 - £30,756
A great opportunity for someone looking to start or develop a career in Highways Engineering including the... Cambridgeshire
Recuriter: Cambridgeshire County Council

Head of Strategic Transport

Cheshire East Council
£64,000 - £75,000 + benefits
We’re committed to “working for a brighter future together” – and we expect you to be too! Cheshire
Recuriter: Cheshire East Council

Regeneration Manager

Mole Valley District Council
£52,895 - £57,143 FTE
This is a great career opportunity to specialise in town centre regeneration and repositioning. Dorking, Surrey
Recuriter: Mole Valley District Council

Technical Services Officer (Mechanical)

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
£36,876 - £38,813
This is an exciting and challenging time for Kirklees and we want to expand our team to manage and deliver construction... Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recuriter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Road and Footway Asset Engineer

Kent County Council
£28,925 per annum
An exciting opportunity has arisen to join the Road and Footway Asset Team as an Asset Engineer. Kent
Recuriter: Kent County Council

Head of Waste

Lincolnshire County Council
£65,651 - £70,725
As Head of Waste, you will be commercially focussed and forward-thinking. Lincolnshire
Recuriter: Lincolnshire County Council

Assistant Director

Reading Borough Council
Up to £92k
It’s the ideal time to take the lead on our modernisation agenda, and deliver growth in the trading of our front line services. Reading, Berkshire
Recuriter: Reading Borough Council

Assistant Director – Highways

Lincolnshire County Council
£82,264 - £107,878
Come and lead the future agenda for our highways services. Lincolnshire
Recuriter: Lincolnshire County Council

County Highways Manager

Lincolnshire County Council
£55,503 - £60,578
Seeking a highly motivated leader and an excellent communicator, who has a proven ability to build relationships and trust, leading by example. Lincolnshire
Recuriter: Lincolnshire County Council

Local Highways Manager (East) - Lincolnshire County Council

Lincolnshire County Council
G12 £43,662 - £50,430
Seeking someone who combines excellent technical knowledge with a dedication to the customer. Lincolnshire
Recuriter: Lincolnshire County Council

Download your Highways App

Google App Apple App

Highways on Fridays

Latest Issue

latest magazine issue

Latest Issue

The ALARM survey 2019

Game over for flyovers?

Traffex, Parkex and Cold Comfort Scotland previews

View the latest issue

Latest Video