Shoddy roadworks land two utility companies with £10,000 fines

Utility companies UK Power Networks and Affinity Water have each been ordered to pay fines of £10,000 for carrying out second-rate repairs to road surfaces in Enfield.

As a result of investigations into repairs by Enfield’s highway inspectors both companies were found to have failed to make sure their works were adequate as they hadn’t used the correct specification stone chippings in the asphalt material. These chipping are essential for safety as they provide a skid-resistant surface.

At Highbury Magistrates’ Court on 19 July, UK Power Networks pleaded guilty to failing to comply with the statutory minimum standards required under the New Roads and Street Works Act 1991. This related to works carried out on Carterhatch Lane on 14 April 2018.  The electric company was ordered to pay a fine of £10,000, costs to Enfield Council of £413.49 and a victim surcharge of £120.

Affinity Water pleaded guilty to the same offence on 19 July and was fined the same amount for work on the Cockfosters Road carried out on 31 March 2018. They were ordered to pay costs of £524.95 and a victim surcharge of £120.

Enfield Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment, Cllr Guney Dogan, said: “This is a very serious matter. Companies of this size should have adequate arrangements in place to prevent this from ever happening. We want to work in partnership with utility companies and other statutory undertakers as they provide essential services to the residents of Enfield. However, we expect that they carry out suitable reinstatements to our highways and will take necessary action where this is not done.

“Enfield Council has a robust inspection regime to assess work on the borough’s roads. We are one of the leading local authorities in the country for ensuring that utility firms reinstate our highways correctly. It is imperative that road surfaces are left in a safe condition for road users. Poorly reinstated utility trenches result in extra disruption to residents and commuters and is quite frankly irresponsible.”

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