Highways Asset Management
Well-Managed Highways Infrastructure – A Code of Practice
Wakefield Council is applying the principles of the national guidance 'Well Managed Highway Infrastructure – A Code of Practice (WMHI) which advocates a 'risk based' approach to highway asset management.
The new Code has given the Council the opportunity to review its highway maintenance practices and processes and not be bound by the prescriptive recommendations of the old ways of working. The new Code allows Council's to better align its service levels more closely to corporate and local objectives and where robust analysis and evidence supports it, the potential to deliver service efficiencies.
As the Highway Authority, the Council has certain legal obligations it must meet to ensure the highway network is safe and fit for purpose. From time to time, these obligations may become the subject of claims for loss or personal injury. Demonstrating that the Council maintains the public highway in accordance with the Code is essential to be able to counter such claims and protect the 'public purse'.
Further information about highways asset management funding
In 2014, the Department for Transport (DfT) undertook a review of the resilience of the UK transport network to extreme weather events. This followed a period of extreme weather in 2013/14, which saw high winds and heavy rainfall.
A number of recommendations were made as a result, in both the short and longer term. What follows is the key short-term recommendation for the local highway network.
Transport Resilience Review
"It is recommended that Local Highway Authorities identify a 'resilient network' to which they will give priority, in order to maintain economic activity and access to key services during extreme weather. Where Authorities have held formal reviews of the winter's events, they should ensure that these are enacted; Authorities which were not affected should nevertheless continue to prepare themselves for future extreme weather."
The development of a resilient network directly supports our council vision: supporting ‘successful businesses, people, places and council’.
Priority has been given to the two greatest risks to the highway network: snow/ice and flooding. A tiered approach to the management of the network has been used, with the gritting routes forming the base of the resilient network.
West Yorkshire Resilient Network Plan
The following documents set out the principles in which Wakefield Council will deliver a Well Managed Highway Infrastructure network: