FOI reference: FOI/18/01424
Date received: 22 May 2018
Date responded: 7 June 2018
I note that the Inspection Defect Summary Report (Annex A) shows that no defects were recorded. However, I note that the Defect Report (Annex B) records several defects including a defect dated 15/02/18, "2 large potholes in outside lane at MP 13/7 & 13/7+50, carry out repairs with back up of to IPV vehicles. Could you please provide some further information regarding this matter? In particular, I should be grateful if you could please confirm when this incident was first identified. Additionally, please could you provide comprehensive details of how carriageway safety inspections are undertaken and how you define a pothole as requiring attention.
I should also be grateful if you could please forward me details, with personal details redacted if necessary, of all incidents, complaints and/or enquiries relating to the M77 Northbound between Jct 4 & 5 between the period 01/01/18 to 01/03/18.
As the information you have requested is 'environmental information' for the purposes of the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (EIRs), we are required to deal with your request under those Regulations. We are applying the exemption at section 39(2) of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA), so that we do not also have to deal with your request under FOISA.
This exemption is subject to the 'public interest test'. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption, because there is no public interest in dealing with the same request under two different regimes. This is essentially a technical point and has no material effect on the outcome of your request.
In our response to you numbered, FOI/18/01110, we provided defect information in Annex A which covered Scotland Transerv's responsibility for the M77. There was no reports of any defects along this stretch of road. Annex B provided information on defects for Connect's stretch of the M77 where defects were reported. For the avoidance of doubt, these Annexes relate to different sections of the trunk road network.
The defects identified in Annex B were surface defects and were advised by Police Scotland on 20 January 2018 which required an emergency response. These were actioned and the area was monitored via the weekly Safety Inspections and Safety Patrols for further deterioration. During the Safety Patrol on 15 February 2018 it was recorded that the area had deteriorated and required additional emergency repairs. Again these were actioned and the area continued to be monitored.
Safety Inspections are carried out by an inspection team from a slow moving vehicle on the hard shoulder whilst Safety Patrols are carried out by the inspection team in a vehicle travelling as slowly as possible without disrupting traffic flow.
There have been no complaints and/or queries relating to the M77 Northbound between Junction 4 and 5 in the period 01 January 2018 to 01 March 2018. Please note Connect Roads Ltd area of responsibility within this section is from Junction 5 Maidenhill Interchange to Ayr Road Overbridge. A length of approximately 500m.
In addition, the following is the definition of a Category 1 & Category 2 defect from Schedule 1, Part 1 of the 4th Generation Term Contract for management and maintenance of the Scottish Trunk Road Network and can also be viewed with the following web link: http://www.transport.gov.scot/road/maintenance/operating-companies:
"Category 1 Defect" means a Defect that necessitates prompt attention because it presents: (i) an immediate or imminent hazard, or (ii) a risk of rapid structural deterioration to the affected element. "Category 2 Defect" means any Defect which is not a Category 1 Defect." In addition, the following extract is taken from Schedule 7 Part 1 of the 4th Generation Term Contract for Management and Maintenance of the Scottish Trunk Road Network:
"2. DEFECT CATEGORIES AND RESPONSE TIMES
2.1 Classification of Category 1 and Category 2 Defects
2.1.1 When classifying Category 1 and Category 2 Defects, the Operating Company shall give consideration to the potential impact on all road users including motorists, pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists, equestrians and disabled users.
2.1.2 The Operating Company shall comply with the provisions of the Transport Scotland Trunk Road Inspection Manual regarding classification of Defects.
2.1.3 The Transport Scotland Trunk Road Inspection Manual is deemed not to contain an exhaustive compendium of Defects. In the absence of a description of a Defect in the Transport Scotland Trunk Road Inspection Manual, the Operating Company shall make the classification from first principles."
The following extract is taken from Schedule 7, Part 1 of the 4th Generation Term Contract for management and maintenance of the Scottish Trunk Road Network and details the timescales for repairing defects:
"2.2 Category 1 Defects Response Times
2.2.1 Unless stated otherwise in this Part, Category 1 Defects shall be dealt with by the Operating Company in priority order as stated in paragraph 2.2 of this Part.
2.2.2 The Operating Company's inspection team or initial Incident Response Resources shall make the Category 1 Defect safe when identified. This shall be through executing immediate repairs, removing the hazard or by taking any other measures necessary to protect the public and other users of the Unit.
2.2.3 Where a Category 1 Defect renders a Trunk Road unsafe for road users, the Operating Company shall, under Police instruction or on receipt of an appropriate Order, close the relevant part of the Trunk Road for as short a period as possible while remedial action is undertaken.
2.2.4 Where a Category 1 Defect cannot be repaired immediately or the hazard cannot be removed, the Operating Company shall take action to make the area safe until the required temporary or permanent repairs have been completed.
2.2.5 The temporary or permanent repairs shall be undertaken as soon as possible and no later than: (i) 06:00 on the day following identification for Category 1 Defects on carriageways, and (ii) within 24 hours of identification for all other Category 1 Defects.
2.2.6 Where a temporary repair has been carried out, the deferred permanent repair period for the following Defect types shall be: (i) 28 days for carriageway surface, and (ii) 56 days for Bridge parapets.
2.2.7 All other Category 1 Defects shall be repaired permanently within the specific period referred to in this Part, or no later than 28 days after identification where no specific period is stated."
Other defects not necessitating immediate attention are categorised as Category 2 and monitored for failure deterioration during safety and detailed inspection. These defects form the basis of future maintenance schemes.
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Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000
The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House