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New Government urged to address local highways
The Road Safety Markings Association is calling on the government to make progress on delivering improved safety to local road networks.
In the wake of the General Election, the Road Safety Markings Association has written to new and returning Members of Parliament to urge a continued focus on the fundamental essentials that make up an effective road network.
RSMA Chief Executive, George Lee said: “Of course, our immediate political outlook involves complex strategic issues in Europe and pressing matters to address closer to home.”
In his letter to MPs, he said: “But there are also many, day-to-day concerns that affect the lives of your constituents; the condition, operation and safety of roads being one of those issues. Local roads that we all must use – whether it’s to get children to school, to reach shops or work or railway station, to enjoy a social life or simply to join the motorway network to travel farther afield – are, in many places, simply not working.
“While the longer-term investment in our motorways is more assured, local authority budgets are under constant pressure, and there is a pressing need for a clear commitment to finding new ways to prioritise road safety on local authority networks. Tax-payers – your constituents – fund these roads and should, quite rightly, demand that they do that.
“National roads enable economic activity to all parts of the country. If the network works, we have an uninterrupted supply chain to our shops and offices; enjoy smooth travel with predictable journey times. And for it to work, it must be safe – for users and for those who maintain the roads.
“The highway sector was facing a significant skills gap long before the 2016 Referendum on our membership of the EU. The outcome of that Referendum, however, throws us further uncertainty whilst the status of EU citizens in the UK remains unclear.”
The RSMA called on MPs to understand the key issues challenging the highway industry now and in the future, and to take note of the recommendations made in its Making the Network Work report, which looks at how the highways industry could meet the challenges faced in the key areas of: road worker health and safety; industry skills shortages; delivering a coherent and sustainable network; and the road safety demands on the network.
Commenting on the outcome of the General Election, George Lee said: “We are pleased to see the return of many of those MPs already close to the issues we face, but ask them to challenge old established standpoints that may be causing a blockage. We look forward to engaging with new MPs and welcome the fresh perspective they will bring.”