Suffolk Highways has seized the opportunity to do more whilst roads are quieter, by increasing its number of repairs and road improvements since the Coronavirus lockdown began. 6,334 potholes and other highway faults were repaired in the county during March and April, compared with 5,345 in the same period last year, meaning a 18.5% increase in repairs.
Through Suffolk Highways’ careful planning of resource prior to and during the lockdown, teams working out on the network have been supported to continue working effectively, whilst keeping themselves and members of the travelling public safe.
On top of these reactive repairs which are picked up through reports from residents and Suffolk Highways’ routine inspections, the service has continued with its larger improvement schemes; completing works on Angel Hill in Bury St Edmunds and continuing with the construction of a new footpath on Heath Lane in Ipswich.
Suffolk Highways has also continued with its cyclical drainage, grass cutting and weed control programmes, ensuring those travelling for essential purposes can do so safely. Further still, the resurfacing and surface dressing programmes have begun – laying new surfaces on roads to help stop potholes from forming in future.
Councillor Andrew Reid, Suffolk County Council’s Cabinet Member for Highways, Transport and Rural Affairs, said:
“Despite the obvious challenges all public services are experiencing at the moment, I am really pleased to see that not only are our highways colleagues continuing business as usual, but they are using the quieter roads to get more done!
“Our teams have had to work in different ways, to ensure they can continue keeping the roads safe and open for use, whilst keeping themselves and those they come into contact with safe and healthy.
“Despite these extra precautions, Suffolk Highways colleagues have increased productivity, repaired more issues and continued with their planned programmes of work. These successes are evidence of the hard work and dedication shown by our key worker operatives – thank you all for what you continue to do to keep our county moving.”