Government introduces scheme to tackle works disruption
30 July 2009

The government has announced a package of measures to reduce the congestion caused by road works.

Anyone working on highways, such as utility companies, will now be subjected to a series of tests every five years to ensure they reach a required standard.

A new permit scheme is also being rolled out in Kent that could soon be introduced nationwide to help coordinate road works.

Under the system, the county council will require anyone carrying out road works to apply for a permit in advance.

This will set conditions on timing, coordination or the amount of road space to be left available to road users during the works.

Transport Minister Sadiq Khan launched the scheme today and said some contractors show “a blatant disregard for the needs of road users”.

“Councils and utility companies must have a joined up approach and co-ordinate work so that disruption is kept to an absolute minimum. I am fed up with excuses about why we can't do road works better,” he said.

A council running a permit scheme is able to charge companies for providing a permit and it will be a criminal offence to work without one.

The maximum fine will be £5000. It will be an offence to not meet a permit condition, for which the maximum fine is £2500.

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