Fleet News

UK may have to upgrade roads

British highways authorities could be forced to upgrade the safety design and signage on roads used for cross-border journeys after new harmonised standards were approved in principle by the EU Council of Ministers.

It has accepted an EU directive on road infrastructure safety management, which is “aimed at ensuring that safety is integrated into all phases of planning, design and operation of the road infrastructure” across the EU’s trans-European network.

These are roads that are commonly used by cross-border traffic.

Within the UK, they include motorways such as the M20 and M2 to the Channel ports in Kent.

But they also include lower grade routes, such as the A5 in north Wales, the A303 to Devon, the A299 in north Kent, the A69 from Newcastle to Carlisle, and the A9 in northeast Scotland.

Under the directive, responsible highways managers would have to: “Ensure a high level of road infrastructure safety within the EU: road safety impact assessments, road safety audits, network safety management and safety inspections.”

Once the law is formally approved, highways authorities would have two years to comply.

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