In 2016, we spoke with then claims manager for Kier Highways Ltd, Ms Granville who explained debris and litter are different things; litter is crisp packets, debris is, for example, the tyre is in the central reserve.
Our questioning arose because we had concerns about the number of incidents seemingly involving litter or debris and that the Authority was paying Kier for the resultant damage and expecting drivers, fleets, haulier or insurers to reimburse them. Why? It appeared to be the Authority’s responsibility to keep the roads clear, that they were paying contractors to do so.
Perversely, it appeared that a contractor leaving debris in the road could expect incidents from which it could profiteer from attendance and reinstatement – possibly this was just a ‘fortunate’ coincidence as opposed to planned conduct – behaviour that toys with lives!
Ms. Granville agreed and understood why there were more of these incidents (seemingly not accepted by the Authority – read more here) explaining the reason we see more of these claims is because operatives are not allowed to cross the carriageway.
A tyre in the central reservation, for example, does not look like it is going to fly out anywhere, so it is left. Ms Granille commented that it is not always the right thing.
We were also informed that now, debris is supposed to be picked up by the HATOs as well. However, we were informed what the HATOs often do is just ‘throw it further out’
However, we were informed the debris is a direct consequence of zero carriageway crossing. Apparently operatives that work on the networks get very frustrated with it because they feel that they should still be allowed to cross the carriageway.
So why is litter & debris left? Because it costs to take items from the central carriageway, Ms Granville explaining:
“the reality is then no one wants to pay for the traffic management to get rid of the tyre, they have to wait ‘til they’re doing something else and then they get it then.”
It appears possible, if not likely, the ‘something else’ is attending to an incident caused by the tyre!
We are fans of ‘ZERO CARRIAGEWAY CROSSINGS‘; safety applies to everyone and the damages associated with being at the side of a motorway should be obvious. We are not fans of the failure of the Authority to address this situation or the lack of consideration given to road users who become victims of this policy, or rather the failure to ensure consistency of clearances resulting from the policy. This is affecting road users and the public pursue … drivers, fleets, hauliers and insurers should think carefully before paying any claim presented and possibly ask themsleves … do I have a claim against the Authority?