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Hertfordshire County Council

Types of highways works in Hertfordshire

How we decide what's needed

We check the condition of every public road in the county each year and consider factors including likely future deterioration, traffic and location.

Although we can’t fix all the roads at once, we give priority to those projects which will give the best long term benefits within the available budget.

Why is no one on site for the full duration of the surfacing works?

A permit of 3-5 days is granted to allow our contractors a fair amount of time to get the surfacing work done. Works can start and finish at any time within this timeframe to allow for any delays. We recommend referring to signs for any updates on timings.


Planning when to do the works

Why aren’t works restricted to nights?

It isn’t always possible to restrict works to nights as some activities aren't safe to do under artificial light. Noise disruption to nearby residents is also an important consideration.

Why don't you remove cones and signs at the end of each day?

Often we can't remove things like traffic cones and signage if there are open excavations. Sometimes it's not possible to set out and remove cones and signage each day because the duration of the job would increase so much.

Why aren’t works done during school holidays?

With the quantity of works taking place across Hertfordshire, it's not possible to do all works during school holidays. We aim to plan in the most disruptive works during school holidays.

Scheduling around utility company work

We try to ensure any scheduled works are carried out before we resurface a road or pavement. However, we don’t always have sight of all upcoming works that utility companies and others have planned.

We may delay works that will disrupt a newly laid surface, unless they are new connections to properties which we can't defer.

Bin collections and roadworks

District and borough councils are responsible for bin collections and we can’t advise on their arrangements. We communicate our upcoming works on the website and put up advance warning boards.

Contact your district or borough council about bin collection arrangements for that week.

Road markings and drain covers

We sweep all sites to collect loose chippings, but a new road surface relies on traffic to bed it in. 

We generally adjust drain covers, raising them if needed, 4-8 weeks after the surfacing works.

We repaint road markings shortly after the surfacing work.


Types of road surfacing

Carriageway micro surfacing

Micro surfacing is a fast and economical way to preserve and protect worn road surfaces. This treatment uses cold materials so has a lower environmental impact than some other surfacing options.

We normally lay 2 coatings of material (a mixture of aggregate and bitumen) over the top of an existing surface to seal, protect it and improve skid resistance.

Micro surfacing work is weather sensitive – humidity, rain or cold weather can delay the works. Sometimes we may need to reschedule the programme at short notice.

Carriageway surface dressing

Surface dressing is a fast, sustainable and cost-effective maintenance treatment that prolongs the life of a road surface.

We lay a thin layer over the top of the existing road surface to seal and protect it, restoring skid resistance and preventing water getting in.

We do patch repairs to fix defects which the surface dressing won’t be able to fix. This is usually done 6 months before the main dressing works

We cover the road with hot bitumen then chippings are rolled in. A few days following the surface dressing, we sweep the road to remove loose chippings.

During this period, we ask customers to drive at 20mph to prevent damage to their vehicles. After we replace all the road markings, the temporary road signs will be removed.

Carriageway resurfacing

Resurfacing is a fast maintenance treatment which replaces the old road surface with a new surface at the same level and removes potholes.

We remove the old surface, clean the planed surface and spray it with a bond coat to help the new surface stick to it. We lay the new material in 1 or 2 layers. We'll also adjust or replace manhole covers on the road, if required.

Footpath micro surfacing

Footpath micro surfacing is a fast and economical way to preserve and protect worn footpaths.

We spread a water-based mixture of stones and bitumen over the top of an existing footpath to seal and protect it. This happens in a series of steps which may be over several weeks.

Micro surfacing work is weather sensitive – rain or cold weather on the day can delay the works.


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