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Cuts to road inspections in Blackburn may 'be dangerous'
COUNCIL chiefs will be urged to reverse a decision to halve the number of road inspections at a special meeting next week.
Blackburn with Darwen Tory leader Mike Lee has called a rarely-used committee into action because he considers the change could be ‘dangerous’.
The shift from six-monthly to yearly inspections of the state of borough highways has been proposed by the council’s Labour leadership as part of a £17.5million scheme to tackle potholes.
Last month, the council’s executive board authorised borrowing £6.5million towards financing the four-year project to resurface main routes and other deteriorating highways using the latest road surfacing technology.
It aims, long-term, to reduce damage to cars and the soaring bill from motorists affected by providing a smoother surface. Coun Lee believes cutting the number of inspections from two a year to just one could have the opposite effect.
He has called a ‘special meeting’ of the council’s ‘call-in committee’ a week tomorrow to urge the executive board to reconsider the decision.
Coun Lee said: “We support the council’s efforts to improve the surface of the roads. However, I think halving the number of inspections from six-monthly to yearly could be counter-productive and dangerous.”
Borough highways boss Maureen Bateson said: “This is part of a move to planned maintenance from reactive maintenance. It has been carefully considered as part of an overall strategy.”
An average of 1,000 ‘safety risk’ potholes are repaired each month at a cost of £50,000, leaving hundreds untreated.
Engineers believe the programme will improve life for motorists.
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