Work starts to repair West Sussex roads

West Sussex County Council highway teams have started the extensive programme of road repairs needed following the severe winter weather.

This is the council's statement 

Tens of thousands of potholes were repaired earlier this year, but more permanent repairs are now being carried out as part of a £15 million investment in our roads.

The teams have already completed permanent repairs at over 140 sites using 8,000 tonnes of materials. In total this makes up 93,000 square metres of repairs including patching and resurfacing. If the repairs carried out so far were added together they would cover 20 football pitches.

As part of the ongoing permanent repairs, the County Council this week started work on its surface dressing programme. 

Surface dressing involves spraying a coating of bitumen on to the road surface, followed by one or more layers of hard stone chippings. This seals the road and prevents water getting into the foundations, which can weaken the road and ultimately lead to potholes forming.

Surface dressing is carried out every year. However, this year the programme is being increased to seal in new repairs and to protect against future winter weather damage.

Derek Whittington, West Sussex County Council Cabinet Member for Strategic Planning and Transport, said: “Surface dressing is a very cost effective way to restore road surfaces compared to other methods. Traffic can also be allowed to run on the new surface almost immediately - avoiding lengthy closures and disruption.

“As well as extending the life expectancy of the road and delaying the need for more expensive repairs it also reduces the chances of potholes developing. Other benefits include an increase in skid resistance, which helps improve road safety.”

Soon after dressing, the road is swept to remove loose chippings. The County Council provides advisory and warning signs, which will not be removed from the site until it is safe to do so.

The County Council will, where practicable, give advance notice of the road works and advice to residents to ensure that their vehicles are not left on roads that are about to be treated. Signs will also be put up advising drivers to drive slowly on recently treated roads.

Drivers and local residents are asked to:

 · Ensure vehicles are not left parked on roads that will be treated.

· Keep speeds low on treated roads to avoid chippings damaging other vehicles.

· Do not overtake on newly treated roads.

· Avoid walking on newly treated roads, as it is possible to get bitumen on shoes.

· Tell us if you have any special needs/requirements or deliveries expected.

Derek added: “This work is necessary to make sure roads in West Sussex, are well maintained and safe. We do aim to keep disruption to a minimum and would like to ask motorists to be patient during this programme of works.”