There is now a national awareness day for potholes. Created by campaigners for the UK’s roads ‘Mr Pothole’ and ‘Street Repairs’, the aim is to put the issue on everyone’s agenda and to encourage people to report potholes they encounter.
Potholes are a major highway hazard for road users. Unfortunately for cyclists, if they hit a pothole, they don’t just face a costly repair bill but also a strong possibility of personal injury or, in the worst cases, death.
The interest in them is perhaps reflected by the fact that an hour-long documentary was screened on ITV on National Pothole Day in January in the prime 9pm – 10pm slot.
The programme delved into the world of potholes on Britain’s roads which cause rage and roadworks – and are responsible for hundreds of injuries every year.
To mark National Pothole Day, Wrekin Products suggested how potholes associated with failed ironwork installations can be reduced.
Collapsed carriageway ironwork installations, and the potholes which result as the reinstatement chips away, are a far-too common sight. Potholes are reported to have cost local authorities £72m in compensation and legal costs since 2013.
WRc research, reported in the industry-defining Streetworks CP373 document, points to a solution. This research paper revealed that up to 89% of ironwork installation failures suffered from foundation issues and that, in 44% of cases, foundation collapse was the sole cause of failure.
With a little understanding of the factors at play, the number of failures and associated potholes can be significantly reduced.
Care in matching the performance characteristics of the elements which have to work together – the manhole cover or gully grate, the mortar and the supporting manhole chamber structure – and in taking account of several factors during installation, are vital to long-lasting ironwork installations.
Engagement between the frame and bedding materials is critical and can be produced by selecting ironwork products which feature mortar engagement slots. Some more sophisticated gully and manhole products have patented engagement surfaces (tread) on the underside to ensure the most robust mortar interlock.
Wrekin Products’ Unite manhole covers feature a range of patent-protected features to make them the most durable on the market. These include very stiff construction and rounded features which prevent cracks from forming.
Having manufactured ironwork products with these features for decades, Wrekin Products went on to develop the UniPak polyester resin bedding system to work in harmony with the geometry of, and forces exerted by, its ironwork.
UniPak combines fast-setting (one-hour), low-notch sensitivity, tensile and flexural-capable bedding mortar with factory-cured HA104/09-conforming packing materials.
Together, Wrekin’s Uni-Pak bedding system and ‘Unite’ range of manhole covers compose a high-specification system and have ensured thousands of reinstatements nationwide remain durable and safe under this county’s most demanding traffic situations.
It is appropriate that as a reaction to National Pothole Day Wrekin gave some thought to the potential causes of what is a major issue.
To find out how we can help you on your next highway project please call us on 01543-440440.