Council told to “Get a grip” on highways as potholes and street light repair targets missed

PUBLISHED: 12:16 01 July 2015 | UPDATED: 12:16 01 July 2015

Kier are responsible for making sure roadworks do not over-run

Kier are responsible for making sure roadworks do not over-run


Highways contractor Kier MG is continuing to miss almost half its performance targets set by the council – and there is no sign of any improvement in the most recent figures.

Suffolk County Council's Sandra GageSuffolk County Council's Sandra Gage

That is the story that will be given to members of the county’s scrutiny committee tomorrow when they hear the latest statistics about the company’s performance.

Kier MG has to meet 24 performance targets relating to road maintenance – from timescales to repair potholes, to maintaining street lighting, and ensuring that roadworks do not over run.

Over the four months between the start of January and the end of April, only 58% of these targets were met.

And there was no sign of any improvement – in January 15 of 24 targets were reached, in February 14, in March 13 and in April 14.

Now opposition transport spokeswoman Sandra Gage has called on the county to take firm action to ensure things improve.

She said: “The county needs to get a grip. These figures are dreadful, and there is no sign of them improving.

“We hear from Kier that they are bringing in new systems but frankly there is no sign of things getting better.”

On three of the four months the company failed to meet its target of repairing all its defects within the agreed time – and in every month it failed to meet its target of ensuring all temporary traffic controls were removed within their agreed time.

The council is due compensation from the company if it fails to meet its targets.

However Ms Gage said much more pressure needed to be applied by the county to ensure work was carried out on time and with the minimum possible disruption to road users.

A spokesman for the county said: “SCC and Kier are working together to understand the issues relating to the failure to meet targets.

“Performance is reviewed every month at joint meetings of the Operational Contract Board. Priorities for improvement are identified and actions taken to address the main areas of concern.

“We work closely with all our contractors to ensure the best possible value for money. We set high standards of attainment for our contractors and ensure that contracts offer financial incentives based on performance.”

If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the East Anglian Daily Times. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Latest from the East Anglian Daily Times