Trunk road defects within 12 months of surfacing: EIR release

Information request and response under the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004.

FOI reference: FOI/17/02194
Date received: 28 September 2017
Date responded: 3 October 2017

Information requested

Details of all incidences of failure (being excessive wear and tear requiring remedial, repair or replacement works) within 12 months of laying, in the period 2000 to 2017, on all public roads and highways including trunk road networks in Scotland, of thin surfacing systems comprising stone mastic asphalt modified with cellulose fibres or HRA (hot rolled asphalt).


As the information you have requested is 'environmental information' for the purposes of the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (EIRs), we are required to deal with your request under those Regulations. We are applying the exemption at section 39(2) of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA), so that we do not also have to deal with your request under FOISA.

This exemption is subject to the 'public interest test'. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption, because there is no public interest in dealing with the same request under two different regimes. This is essentially a technical point and has no material effect on the outcome of your request.

While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance Transport Scotland does not have some of the information you have requested. Therefore we are refusing part of your request under the exception at regulation 10(4)(a) of the EIRs. The reason why that exeption applies is that Transport Scotland only have responsibility over Trunk Roads and Motorways. However, you may wish to contact individual local authorities who have the responsibility for local roads and who may be able to help you.

Annex A is an extract from our database, which records the date of surfacing and material type as well as the locations where carriageway defects have been recorded during routine inspections of the network. The data has been filtered to show those locations where defects were recorded within twelve months of the road resurfacing and where cellulose fibres are known to have been included in the mixture. Unfortunately, the database does not record the nature or the extent of the defects but the number of carriageway defects within each section is noted. Whilst Hot Rolled Asphalt can still be used on Scottish trunk roads, it is used only very rarely these days.

It should be noted that the contractual arrangements in place for resurfacing works of this nature include requirements for a warranty from the contractor. This means that any defects occurring within the twelve month window requested will be repaired under that warranty and at no cost to Transport Scotland.

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