Careless motorists - not taxpayers - should pay when damage Essex CC equipment

October 15, 2018 7:47 PM
Originally published by Essex Liberal Democrats

Road Sign smallEssex County Council has been challenged to ensure that careless motorists - not taxpayers - should pay for repairs when they damage Essex CC equipment.

Cllr Mike Mackrory (Leader of the Lib Dem Opposition at Essex CC) asked the Cabinet Member for Highways about the council's policy for recovering costs of damage to highway items caused by road traffic collisions.

Reply from Leader of the Council

'May I thank the Member for Springfield for the question. Essex Highways have an agreed process for the recovery of money from third parties who have either caused damaged directly to assets on the Essex network or have caused Essex to incur costs to make safe, or return the highway to a safe AN7 condition following an incident.

Over the last 5 years, Essex Highways has handled more than 7,274 claims logged since the start of the financial year 2013/14. The claims team have invoiced a total of £1.7m relating to incidents up to the end of the financial year 2017/18. Essex County Council have directly received £2m of recoveries during this same period as the Essex Highways claims team diligently pursue old claims to maximise the returns to the council. So far in 2018/19 Essex County Council have received £0.3m of further recoveries as the claims team actively pursue a number of live claims. In recent times there has been more focus on recovering damage costs from third parties, with particular attention to improving the culprit identification rate. We recently ran an awareness campaign aimed at giving more guidance to those out on the network on the information required to identify culprits. Further externally focused campaigns are planned in the next few months.'