Caroline Hinchcliffe Q&A

Caroline Hinchcliffe, Highways England

  1. Why is the road marking industry the target of this competition when the problem is partly due to underlying issues with the road surface? Will a similar competition also be run in the future with the surfacing industry?
    We are aware that the condition of the road surface can be a contributing factor to the issues we see affecting the road markings.  This competition, which is aimed at finding the most relevant marking materials and removal methods for the different types of road surface on our network is the first stage in the Highways England strategy to address the effects of removing road markings from our network.  It is quite possible that the surfacing industry and the road surfaces will be addressed in new strategies moving forward.
  2. Will stage 3 of the competition, when installing material on the road, be conducted in accordance with BSEN1824? How will this competition affect future road marking trials?
    Stage 3 will not be to BS EN 1824 as we want to look at different aspects of road marking material and removal than undertaken in EN 1824 road trials.
  3. There is quite a short time frame from when competition rules were published and the closing date. What is the reasoning behind the short time-frame?
    This competition was not intended to encourage participants to develop new products and techniques from scratch in just 4 weeks.  It was intended to stimulate the market and encourage the submission of products (whether currently used or otherwise) in order that they could be identified as being the ‘best in class’.
  4. What is Highways England doing to future proof road markings in relation to autonomous vehicles?
    We are working with other road authorities via CEDR, industry via BSI B/509 and TC226 WG12 and through ERF, to confirm both marking design and maintenance requirements for autonomous and assistive technology. The next meeting of B/509/2, which you are members of will be on the 6th December.
  5. Does Highways England have an info on the public opinion on roadmarkings in the UK? We’ve all heard of complaints re potholes, but have complaints re the state of roadmarkings also been raised?
    We have data available to us in regard to customer complaints about potholes and in relation to what we spend repairing them.  The state of road markings has also been highlighted by Transport Focus.  The road markings that are not performing to standard, whether that be those that have been blacked out, those that are fading, or shadow lines from removal techniques are visible for all to see and were highlighted in the photographs shown during the presentation – we, as Highways England are saying that the state of the road marking in these areas are not acceptable.
  6. Over the 8km stretch, will the markings be laid as normal lane delineation markings?
    Yes.  We plan to lay road marking across a consistent 8km stretch to ensure as much consistency as possible in regard to environmental conditions and traffic flow, wear and tear etc.


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