29 Aug 2019
Although we would all like to pay less for fuel, the cost of reducing fuel duty by two pence, according to the treasury, would be circa £1.5bn; the Road Safety Markings Association (RSMA) argues this would be better spent on funding local roads.
Local roads that we all must use – whether it’s to get children to school, to reach the shops, to commute, to enjoy a social life, or simply to join the motorway network to travel farther afield are in many cases, not fit-for-purpose, due to poor quality and badly maintained road markings.
While the longer-term investment in our motorways is more assured, local authority budgets are under constant pressure, and there is a pressing need for a clear commitment to finding new ways to prioritise road safety on local authority networks. Professionally installed and maintained road markings are a highly cost effective way of improving safety and provide arguably the best value for money solution to the tax-paying public.
Road markings are also of paramount importance to the highways network if we are to ever see the adoption of fully-autonomous vehicles; if this ambition is to be met, a vast programme of road marking renewal needs to be undertaken to raise the standard of local roads.
Stu McInroy, RSMA Chief Executive said:
“Road markings are a key component of a safe and effective road network, are crucial to driver safety and comfort, and a highly effective method of reducing risk at a fraction of the cost of major engineering projects. Undertaking an extensive road marking renewal programme, using qualified operatives and NHSS7 accredited contractors, across the local roads network, would yield huge benefits to road users.
Cutting fuel duty is the latest in a series of voter-friendly proposals, indicating an election is on the horizon, but after continuous under-investment on the local road network from successive Governments, a real vote-winner would be a cast-iron commitment to fund immediately and ring-fence future funding for the roads we all use on a daily basis.”