Kent's roads treated for the future, proving prevention is better than the cure

18 August 2021
Image of a new road surface, along a rural road.
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Key routes are among 45 miles of road in the county which have been treated with a more reliable substance.

The material, known as surface dressing, is made with bitumen binder and sprayed onto the road before being covered with granite chippings.

The layers seal the surface of the road to prevent water from getting in and creating potholes of the future. It also makes routes safer as it improves skid resistance.

An added benefit is the treatment is more economical costing £5 per square metre and can preserve the road for up to 10 years, instead of the £25-£30 per square metre it costs to repair deteriorated roads.

Some of the 47 main roads to have been treated in the three-week maintenance blitz in July and August included the A228 Ashton Way, Seven Mile Lane and A25 Maidstone Road.

Kent County Council’s Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport, David Brazier, said: “Kent has one of the largest and most heavily trafficked road networks in the UK and we need to look after it.

“We have most recently used this specialist treatment on some of our major routes such as the A228 Ashton Way, Seven Mile Lane and the A25 Maidstone Road.

“This treatment has proved itself to be cost-effective, forward-thinking and is the epitome of prevention being better than the cure.

“Surface dressing is a crucial tool in our armoury to prevent problems from coming up in the future.”

The work forms part of a £50 million annual road maintenance programme.

Principal Operations Manager at Amey, which completed the work on behalf of KCC, Judith Bilboe, said: “Working with Hazell and Jefferies, we have been able to carry out carriageway surface dressing works on some of the strategic routes in Kent.

“I am proud of the collaborative work that our team has carried out with Kent County Council."

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