Highways took five months to an­swer ques­tion

Halifax Courier - - Business -

Of­fi­cers in Calderdale Coun­cil’s Highways depart­ment took five months to tell a coun­cil­lor they had no plans to resur­face a road in his ward. Coun James Baker (Lib Dem, War­ley) wrote to Highways at the re­quest of a res­i­dent in March to ask if there were any plans to resur­face Ling Royd Av­enue, Hal­i­fax.

Five months later Coun Baker re­ply from the Highways depart­ment in­form­ing him that there were no im­me­di­ate plans to resur­face the road.

Coun Baker said: “Can you imag­ine any or­gan­i­sa­tion tak­ing five months to re­ply to a query?”

The re­sponse read: “Fur­ther to your re­quest in March re­gard­ing the above, we are writ­ing to ad­vise you that we have no im­me­di­ate plans to resur­face Ling Royd Av­enue. The rea­son be­ing is that in the past a sys­tem of “re­fer­rals” was used to as­sess parts the high­way net­work which should be con­sid­ered for main­te­nance.

“Re­fer­rals were orig­i­nated from a va­ri­ety of sources, in­clud­ing high­way safety in­spec­tors, high­way area su­per­in­ten­dents, mem­bers of the public and con­di­tion sur­veys. How­ever, with the for­ma­tion of a new Highways As­set Man­age­ment Team un­der the Highways Ser­vice re-struc­ture (ef­fec­tive from 1 April), this has now changed.

“All roads within Calderdale will be sub­ject to tech­ni­cal sur­veys which will be un­der­taken by an ex­ter­nal con­trac­tor. The sur­veys will mea­sure the road con­di­tion and will be used to iden­tify where main­te­nance should be tar­geted in the short, medium and longer term.

“We are us­ing a ten­der process to em­ploy the con­trac­tor and hope to be able to start the sur­veys as soon as pos­si­ble. In the mean­time, the road will be sub­ject to monthly safety in­spec­tions and mem­bers of the public are en­cour­aged to re­port any de­fects they are aware of.”

Mark Thompson, Calderdale Coun­cil’s Di­rec­tor of Econ­omy and En­vi­ron­ment, said: “Re­gret­tably this was a mis­take on our part. We have apol­o­gised to Coun Baker and re­sponded to his query.

“We are tak­ing steps to en­sure this doesn’t hap­pen again.”

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