Transport written question – answered on 8th September 2014.

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Photo of Greg Knight Greg Knight Conservative, East Yorkshire

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport for what reason the Highways Agency closed the M180 in August 2014; and if he will direct the Highways Agency to take steps to prevent a reoccurrence of that closure during future holiday periods.

Photo of John Hayes John Hayes Minister of State (Department for Transport)

The Highways Agency closed the M180 eastbound carriageway between junction 3 and the M18 junction 5 in August 2014 to carry out essential maintenance to the carriageway. The work required deep excavation to carry out repairs to the concrete foundations and needed time for the concrete to harden and for the bituminous layers to cool and set before traffic could run on the finished road surface. This type of work is best carried out in the summer months when the weather conditions are most favourable.

The decision to close the carriageway to carry out the works was based on balancing the impact of the works on motorists with an intention to minimise the overall duration of the works. It is clear now that this outcome was not achieved; the agency recognises that road users suffered significant delays and it has apologised for this.

A thorough review of the planning and execution of the works is being carried out by the agency and the lessons learnt from this will be used to mitigate any reoccurrence of such delays.

The remaining work on the M180 has been reprogrammed so that it is carried out overnight when traffic flows are low. The agency is re-consulting local authorities to agree traffic management proposals and diversion routes. Proposals will be scrutinised closely to ensure that they are robust and any residual risks are mitigated.

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