Warwickshire Police ask farmers to remove mud on the road and drivers to take extra care
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Warwickshire Police is asking farmers and contractors to please consider other road users and remove mud on the road after recently receiving a number of reports of mud creating poor road conditions in the county. Vehicle operators who deposit mud on the road are also potentially liable for a range of offences.
Carol Cotterill of Warwickshire Police, said “We understand and appreciate that vehicles including tractors and trailers need to go from wet fields onto the highway, but if mud is left on the road it must be removed or it could cause an accident.
“We know the majority of farmers do take this very seriously and we thank them for cleaning the mud from the road and doing all that they can to make the highway safe for other road users.”
The advice is that you should:- • Do everything possible to prevent mud being deposited on the road. This includes cleaning mud from vehicles, as far as practicable, before they are taken onto the road. • If there is a danger of mud being accidently deposited on roads, use ‘Slippery Road’ signs with a ‘Mud on Road’ sub plate to alert other road users. Check with your local highways authority their requirements for warning signs at the side of the road. • Clean the road as necessary during the working day and always at the end of the working day. • Ensure that labour and equipment is available and is suitable for the soil and weather conditions present. • Where a contractor is used, ensure that prior agreement is reached on who is responsible for mud on road issues (signage, cleaning etc) and ensure that adequate public liability insurance is in place.
It is advisable, where possible, to: • Be prepared to hire in equipment – check availability in advance • Keep to your own farm roads and minor roads whenever possible • Keep to low speeds – especially when travelling a short distance – to help retain mud on the vehicle. • Keep a written record of your decisions on whether or not to deploy signs and/or to clean the road.
George Bostock, NFU Warwickshire County Adviser, said: “Most farmers and agricultural contractors do everything they can to minimise the amount of mud deposited on the road, but this is a timely reminder about their responsibilities.
“It’s important for them to have a plan to warn other road users of hazards and clean the road as soon as possible, throughout the operation if required.
“There is, however, a real need for other motorists to continue to bear with the farming community and be aware of farm vehicles when out and about on the roads.
“We’d like to thank the public for their support and we would urge them to continue to Back British Farming.
“The NFU is also working closely with the police and local authorities to raise awareness of the issues at key times of the year."