Sewer connection in the public highway? This is what you need to know.

Sewer connections frequently have to be made in the public highway, since that’s usually where the mains public sewer runs – and of course this means that any works will come under The New Roads and Street Works Act 1991.

As such, there’s a raft of different documentation required when you make a sewer connection within the public highway. You will need a road opening permit, which gives you permission to excavate, and a Section 50 licence for adding new apparatus under the highway, and you may need a road closure permit, a temporary traffic signal licence, or a temporary traffic regulation order. Then, of course, once works are completed you will need to get your completed works certificate. In addition, you will need method statements and risk assessments specific to the sewer connection works in question, and also a traffic management plan.

The good news is, we take care of all the documentation required from start to finish, ensuring that our customers never have to worry about compliance – and that’s not just when it comes to the licences and permits required for sewer connections in the public highway, but every job we do.

How to plan sewer connections in the public highway
It’s also worth considering that decisions made about the way sewer connection works are carried out in the public highway can help reduce costs and ease the burden of compliance. For example, on a recent job in central London, we were asked to make a connection to a sewer that ran down a Red Route, which would likely mean a high cost in terms of the lane closures, and also TFL rental scheme daily charges would apply. However, rather than take the expected approach of working with open-cut trenches, we proposed the use of timber headings – which not only avoided the cost of the road closure and traffic management expenses, but kept traffic flowing through the area, to the benefit of all road users.

Another method we use to keep costs under control and speed up timescales (since with a full lane closure can take up to 12 weeks for the necessary licences to be granted), is to carry out the excavation one half at a time, running two-way traffic lights on a part-lane closure. Whether this is possible will depend on the location of the public sewer beneath the public highway, however.

Urban areas: intelligent solutions can avoid red tape
If your sewer connection works are in an urban area, road closures and traffic control are going to be much bigger factors in terms of planning the job – and more significant considerations in ensuring a smooth, speedy process. Local authorities in city centres are particularly keen to avoid gridlock (which happens easily, owing to the fact that many such areas have heavy traffic volumes), while the location of schools or hospitals also add complexity, since roads close to these are best kept open. We are proud of our track record in finding the best solution for works in complex urban sites, helping our customers keep both cost and compliance under control.

If you’d like to find out more about how we tackle traffic control around sewer connection works in the public highway, and to get some free professional advice on your project, call us today on 01268 950050 or email [email protected].

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