In January 2017, we sought an ‘Urgent Review of Highways Claims’ being concerned about the information emanating from Highways England and their contractor. We highlighted that vehicles, said to have been used by Kier Highways Ltd following an incident, such as a collision, were clearly not involved. An example (T07B800) was a Vehicle Registration Mark (VRM) that had been reported stolen from Kier many months before it was said to have been involved in repair work on a motorway; unlikely – it has not been found to this day and was un-taxed since the date of theft – report here.
Highways England’s head of Green Claims explained the anomaly was understood to be a ‘simple case of a typographical error’ and provided the correct VRM. However, when we pointed out that the new VRM was that of a convertible sports car, inconsistent with a Traffic Management ‘truck’, Highways England fell silent and never returned to us with the correct VRM. Payment of the invoice was sought.
We have encountered a motorcycle VRM claimed as being used for Traffic Management, a Vauxhall Agila and Ford Focus claimed for as though emergency incident response 4×4’s and a VRM that has no detail recorded against it at the DVLA. But the latest in this series of misrepresented marks is that of another Traffic Management vehicle, usually large Eurocargo trucks or similar. An enquiry of the truck’s WX13 plate revealed that it was recorded at the DVLA as an ‘Elite 8’ – not a vehicle we had previously seen used for the protection of crews working on motorways. The vehicles, in a range now understood to include the ‘8 Plus’, a rugged, high performance, comfortable vehicle for rough terrain, afford an operative little protection on a carriageway …
The above is similar to the ‘Elite 8’, understood to be capable of 8mph.
The ‘urgent review’ has yet to occur. Whilst we have sought details of the repairs with which these erroneous VRM’s have been associated understanding Highways England receives such information about every incident, to date the data has not been forthcoming.
A request for information has been similarly ignored – WhatDoTheyKnow.