We’ve had a few reports recently of road surface dressing using sprayed tar and then loose chippings – particularly on the rural back roads. While this is apparently a very cost effective way to treat a road, the resulting loose chippings can form a hazard to cyclists and motorbikes, while they’re not that popular with motorists either as the chippings can be damaging to people’s paintwork. Although the traffic does eventually sweep the chippings away from the main part of the road, they tend to accumulate on the edges which are hard to avoid if you’re on a bike, especially on narrow single track roads.
Inquiries to the council suggest that when the road is treated in this way, it should be swept roughly two days and then five days afterwards as part of the process. From the amount of chippings that we’ve seen, this doesn’t appear to be happening, or at least not sufficiently thoroughly. However, if you report excessive loose chippings either directly or through your local councillor, then they should respond and sweep again.
So don’t suffer in silence – and don’t risk losing control on a dangerous surface. Please do let the council know if there are roads you ride where you don’t feel safe – and get them sorted out before you or someone else comes a cropper. You can report road defects here, and find out who your councillors are here – or you can contact your councillors through Write to Them – just pop in your postcode and it will do the rest.