Potholes and Street Lighting - Update
- Meeting of Business Overview and Scrutiny Committee, Wednesday, 27th November 2019 6.00 p.m. (Item 28.)
Brian Smith, Senior Highway Maintenance Street Light Manager, introduced a report which provided an update on the measures being undertaken to reduce potholes in the carriageway and reduce the number of streetlights not working across the borough. The report also provided information regarding the methods being employed to bring about sustainable reduction improvements.
In response to Members’ comments, both Brian Smith and Paul Graves, Street Lighting and Operations Manager, made the following comments:
· All the highways services contracts in respect of repairs to potholes were paid on a price schedule for work which was actually undertaken and on a banded scale so that the more work a contractor received the cost to the Council, per square metre reduced.
· There were multiple ways of supplying the infrastructure for the street lighting columns with the Council having its own underground cable network as well as the Scottish Power network. Faults could sometimes be rectified quickly but some could take longer and problems could sometimes be compounded, if a whole lighting column needed replacing leading to an extended delay in repairs.
· There were guaranteed standards of provision with Scottish Power, regulated by Ofgem, and dependent upon whether or not there was some form of exemption, compensation could be paid.
· In respect of the Penny Bridge roundabout there was a major cable fault and a full infrastructure redesign was currently taking place with installation due to take place, hopefully over the next few months.
· In respect of communications for works being undertaken around the borough, this had been identified as a problem and was currently being addressed, with postings on the website and new simplified standard letters for residents.
· With regard to street light faults, straightforward repairs were carried out as soon as possible, if a full replacement was required and it was part of the LED replacement scheme then there could be a delay.
· A small contract was in place to replace a number of lamp columns which had been damaged by traffic accidents or which were found to be dangerous and structurally unsound and needed to be cut down.
David Armstrong, Assistant Chief Executive, also responded to some comments and referred to proposed general signage which could be put out where the fault was due to underground cabling to alert motorists to the cause. A programme totalling £500,000, over the next two years was also in place for replacement bollards and reflective signage on traffic islands. Including an external contractor, there were now three teams fixing 600/700 electrical faults each month.
The Chair referred to some particular issues affecting the southern end of the borough and looked forward to these being addressed in the near future and also suggested the need for Scottish Power to be invited back to the Committee.
Members also thanked the officers for their report to the Committee and responses to questions.
On a motion by the Chair, duly seconded it was then –
(1) That the report be noted.
(2) That the actions taken to reduce pothole repairs and street lighting outages be supported.