Birmingham City Council’s highways partner, Amey, has launched a collaborative initiative with road marking specialist WJ to provide enhanced productivity and significant environmental benefits when carrying out recovery work on the city’s Red Routes.
Amey manages and maintains the city’s 2,500km road network in Europe’s largest local government highways partnership and strives to work closely with the supply chain to achieve continual improvements in line with the client’s objectives.
Red Route Clearways are a method of ensuring that the most effective use is made of the road space, allowing improved travel for both people and goods. Red Routes involve a package of measures including road improvements and, as necessary, any dedicated loading areas for delivery vehicles, all complemented by better enforcement against drivers of any vehicles that stop or park within a signed and marked clearway. These measures help to improve traffic flow and reduce congestion.
The latest initiative implemented by Amey and WJ tackles the challenge of maintaining Red Routes efficiently. Traditional road marking trucks are only designed to deliver white and yellow markings. So prior to this initiative the red markings had to be reinstated on a second visit to site which created added safety risks, increased disruption, more environmental impact and additional cost.
Now lining maintenance schemes, particularly when following resurfacing of strategic routes, are being programmed for WJ road marking crews to reinstate the necessary highway demarcation all in one visit, with trucks newly equipped with all the resources to deliver red, white and yellow markings in a single visit. The outcome is that the previous undesirable impacts have been inverted to provide efficient delivery, savings on traffic management, fewer vehicle movements, reduced emissions and less disruption for Birmingham’s road users.
Chris Evans, Supervisor for Amey in Birmingham, said: “By liaising closely with WJ, we are continually finding better ways of working. In this instance the WJ innovative road marking vehicle with triple boilers has provided an ideal solution to reinstate white, yellow and red road markings, all on the same visit. . Our main priority is always to carry out these contracting activities as safely as possible for both the workforce and the road user, but this new vehicle design also provides the added benefits of better works planning and keeping disruption for road users to a minimum.”
Overall the new operational approach, coupled with the WJ Group carbon trust credentials, is expected to provide more than a 60% reduction in fuel use and emissions in support of Amey’s environmental management and carbon footprint reduction strategy.
Neil Steggles, WJ Contracts Manager, commented: “Our crews live locally and operate out of our West Midlands depot so they have minimum travel time and know their way around the Birmingham road network, which is a great advantage in getting the job done.”
WJ hold Bronze Accreditation for the Fleet Operator Recognition Scheme (FORS). Consequently, the road marking trucks are equipped with vulnerable road user safety features including near side cameras, close proximity indicators, V6 mirrors and side underrun bars. This all follows the FORS ethos whilst also protecting the environment.
Eddie Fellows, Highway Network Director for Amey added “This is an excellent achievement which demonstrates collaboration working in very practical ways. We encourage our internal teams and our supply chain to work closely together in this way to provide an excellent service for the people of Birmingham.”
Amey is one of the largest and most diverse companies working for the public and regulated sectors in the UK, with the ultimate aim of creating better places for people to live, work and travel.
WJ are the UK’s leading specialist road marking company, with a drive to develop advanced processes to make the sector a leader in innovation and safe practices for both the workforce and road user.