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Report It explained

This page provides information on how to report a problem on the highway to the service area as well as an overview of how defects and other highway related matters are assessed and prioritised for intervention.

Whilst we carry out routine highway safety inspections as detailed below we also receive reports from the public about highway defects. Digital solutions such as Report It and the myStaffs app have enabled easier access for the public as well as making the process of reporting a defect much more efficient.

In this section:


Routine highway safety inspections

We operate a comprehensive routine inspection regime and all roads on the 3,500 mile public highway network are inspected monthly, quarterly or annually depending on their road classification.

Over 1,200 miles of highway are inspected each month. Major routes that form the strategic network across the county are driven on a monthly basis. Service roads that carry significant numbers of heavy commercial vehicles are driven every three months and the more residential and rural areas are inspected annually. Footways in busy urban areas are walked monthly, whereas footways on cul-de-sacs and rural roads are inspected annually. 


Reactive highway safety inspections

In addition to routine inspections, we have a small team of reactive inspectors who operate from four highway depots around the county and investigate publicly generated reports of problems on the highway.

Please note: we can receive between 3,000 to 5,000 reports a month in relation to highway matters.


How do I report a problem on the public highway?

The preferred and most efficient way to report non-urgent problems on the highway network is to use either Report It or by making a report through the myStaffs app which is available for both Android and iOS compatible devices.


It’s outside of office opening hours, what should I do?

Outside of our normal operation hours (Monday to Friday 8:00am - 4:00pm, including bank holidays) we use a call out rota and pager service in the event of an out-of-hours highway emergency.

You can still call 0300 111 8000 during these times and you will be presented with an automated message that provides a contact number for the out of hours pager service.

Follow the instructions provided for the area in question and a call-handler will take details of the emergency and your contact information before passing this onto the on-call officer for the area.

Please do not contact the pager service out of hours for non-emergencies, these can be reported either online or via the myStaffs app which are then automatically logged electronically and will receive attention as soon as resources allow.

District areas codes

When you report an out of hours highways emergency, please select the appropriate area code from the following options:

  • Area 1 - for the district of Staffordshire Moorlands
  • Area 2 - for the borough of Stafford
  • Area 3 - for the areas of Cannock Chase and the district of South Staffordshire
  • Area 4 - for the district of Lichfield and the borough of Tamworth
  • Area 5 - for the borough of East Staffordshire and Burton
  • Area 6 - for the borough of Newcastle-Under-Lyme

What happens to your report?

Once a record has been created for the problem you have reported, you will be provided with a unique reference number. 

Whilst we will aim to complete an inspection of the problem within 10 working days, this may not always be possible during extreme or adverse weather such as strong winds or storms, heavy and persisting rainfall or prolonged snow and ice.

It should not be necessary for any follow-up contact to be made by you once you have been supplied with a reference number and confirmation of your report.

It is not currently possible for us to keep you automatically updated on progress with all reports received about highways. However, depending on the problem you report, we offer limited updates which are sent by email.

The following report types allow for automated updates:

  • Reports about highway defects e.g. pothole, blocked gully, broken signs
  • Reports about speed limit concerns or other road safety issues
  • Reports about road works and third-party activities on the highway
  • Reports in relation to some issues requiring an application to be made (VAC, APM, DPPB)

The following report types do not currently allow for automated updates:

  • Reports about problems with street lights or traffic signals
  • Reports in relation to some issues requiring an application to be made (RPZ, Pre-App advice)

Emails are triggered at the following stages:

  • Report made online - confirmation/acknowledgement email sent
  • Officer/inspector has assessed report - email sent containing details of works instruction or closing notes from officer/inspector

Once your report is generated you will receive a confirmation email from the Highways team. This email will include your report reference number. You will need this to monitor your report online, you can do this on Report It.

The possible outcomes of a report are:

  • Enquiry Closed - Work Raised: The inspector/officer has identified works at the location and an order for the required works has been made.
  • Enquiry Closed - No Action: This will be used where no works are required. This could be for a number of reasons, including a defect not meeting investigatory levels, or a site not requiring intervention.
    The inspector/officer will include how this decision has been made in their comments.

Maintenance works are prioritised for completion in accordance with a local risk-based policy. Other works, such as the formulation of a traffic regulation order associated with reports about parking or traffic speed concerns, require several months to complete. You can find further information on our traffic regulation order page.

Answer:

We can receive between 3,000 and 5,000 reports every month during normal weather conditions regarding a variety of highway matters however our resource to investigate these reports is extremely limited.

Whilst we will aim to complete an inspection of the problem within 10 working days, this may not always be possible during extreme or adverse weather such as strong winds or storms, heavy and persisting rainfall or prolonged snow and ice; which can generate an increase in report volumes. During these times, inspections will be completed as soon as possible.

Once the inspection is completed you will receive an automatic email updating you of the outcome.

Answer:

This means that an inspector/officer has assessed the location and ordered works to be undertaken to remedy the problem.

Answer:

If your report was regarding multiple defects, then it is most likely you have received an update on the ‘defect’ we were able to attach to your report. Currently we can only create automated updates for one ‘defect’ attached to a report, even if several mentioned on your report have been considered by the inspector.

If you only reported one defect, we may need to investigate the issue further and would ask that you make a new report explaining the problem in detail.

Answer:

Our inspector will arrive at the exact destination you plotted on the map when you submitted your report. If they encounter difficulty identifying the problem, they may try to contact you for further information, but this is not always possible given the volume of reports they receive.

Please ensure that when plotting the location, you do so accurately. Text fields are provided so that you can include any additional location information such as landmarks or points of reference. Examples can include:

  • Outside house number 2
  • Opposite The Bulls Head pub
  • 10 feet before the traffic lights

This will help our inspectors to locate the defect and perform an inspection.

Answer:

Many of our roads and footways house the infrastructure which supplies gas, water, electricity and other services to our homes and businesses. Utility companies understandably wish to assure that they can continually provide their essential supplies and to enable them to do so means they have a legal right to work in the highway. It also means they are responsible for repairing their apparatus if it becomes defective, and also for ensuring that any reinstatements they make to road or footway surfaces following excavations, are fit for purpose.

Either the apparatus (e.g. ironwork) or defect (e.g. a surface reinstatement) in question is not the responsibility of Staffordshire County Council and the inspector has raised a notice and sent this to the relevant apparatus owner.

If the issue is non-urgent, we will continue to monitor the location during routine safety inspections. No action is required from you, however, you may wish to contact the apparatus owner directly to pursue when they will complete the necessary repair.

Answer:

The following are examples where Staffordshire County Council as the local highway authority cannot investigate or resolve the problem you have reported.

Private roads/area

The issue you have reported is not within the public highway and we believe the area to be privately owned.  Therefore, we are not in a position to investigate the issue you have raised. However, should you wish to pursue this matter, you can contact the Land Registry to identify the landowner.

Unadopted roads/area

The issue you have reported is not within the public highway and we believe the area to be ‘unadopted’. Therefore we are not in a position to investigate the issue you have raised.  However, should you wish to pursue this matter, you can contact the developer of the site which currently holds maintenance responsibility for the location.

You will need to contact the land owner to notify them of the defect. You can search for a road status. If the road is within Staffordshire, this map will establish whether a road is maintained by our highways team. If it’s a public right of way, you can locate and report this to our rights of way team.

If the area is outside of Staffordshire or is classed as private/un-adopted then you will need to establish who the owner is by undertaking a land registry search.

Other local highway authority

The area where you have reported a problem is outside of the boundary maintainable by our highways team. We are not in a position to investigate the issue you have reported, as this falls under the maintenance responsibility of the neighbouring local highway authority for the area. Details of the Staffordshire boundary can be found either on our road status map or our boundary map.

Highways England

The area where you have reported a problem is outside of the boundary maintainable by our highways team. Motorways and trunk roads in Staffordshire are maintained by Highways England.

District/borough service/landowner

The issue you have reported is believed to be the responsibility of the local district/borough council. Therefore we not in a position to pursue this matter. Contact details for your local district/borough council can be found online.


Customer alerts

Members of the public can also sign up for alerts via email. Our alerts system includes alerts about severe weather, planned county council roadworks, and a range of other county council services.


What we don't do

Please contact the district or borough council for the area to report any of the following:

  • Abandoned vehicles

  • Fly tipping (unless this is causing an obstruction to the highway)

  • Dead animals on the highway

  • Leaves on the highway

  • Litter collection and road sweeping

  • Street name plate maintenance

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