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Roads: Repairs and Maintenance

Volume 477: debated on Friday 13 June 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what mechanisms are in place to ensure road safety is upheld when road maintenance is taking place. (209946)

[holding answer 12 June 2008]: The Department for Transport recognises that during road maintenance and street works it is important to protect adequately both road workers and road users. To enable highway authorities, statutory utilities and contractors to maintain safety there is comprehensive, national guidance on how to design and operate temporary traffic management in Chapter 8 of the Traffic Signs Manual. This guidance is developed by the Highways Agency in association with industry and other stakeholders such as the Health and Safety Executive. Additional guidance, mainly for workers undertaking urban utilities work is also included in "Safety at Street Works and Road Works: a Code of Practice". Both documents are published on the Department's website at www.dft.gov.uk.

These documents recognise that the principle of maintaining adequate safety requires workers to be protected with cones, barriers and safety zones. However, as cones and barriers can pose a risk to road users speed limits are often imposed to reduce that risk, with enforcement measures where practicable.