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Contents OCR Statement Our Winter Service
Improving Our Network Appearance Our People
Making Our Roads Safer
Inspecting and Maintaining Our Roads Our Environment
Maintaining Our Structures
Management, Monitoring and Reporting
Our Customer Response
Our Responsible Financial Management
Operating Company Representative's Statement It has been a year of ever increased focus and determination at Scotland TranServ. A year of enhanced collaboration and partnership with our client, customers and stakeholders alike. None of which could be possible without the high calibre of our employees and their professional delivery.
This collaborative approach has not only increased confidence from our customers, it has also helped us achieve improved programme delivery. With budgets increasing we have risen to the challenge to continually and successfully upscale our works, exceeding clientâ€™s aspirations. Through the strength of our team, increased engagement and sound financial management, our spend has grown from ÂŁ54million to an unprecedented ÂŁ64million during 2019/20. This marks an impressive 19% increase in delivery, despite relative consistency in the size of our workforce. In real terms, this delivers a safer network and improved experience to road users on behalf of Transport Scotland.
Our People When I arrived in August 2019, I was quickly impressed by the team. Their knowledge, ability, dedication and innovation has always been widely recognised by industry experts across the UK. This was demonstrated again, with Scotland TranServ collecting a further six awards during 2019/20. In the last few years we have achieved a haul of 14 awards, covering a broad scope of recognition from diversity, road safety, and communications through to innovation. Our investment in youth and addressing the gender imbalance within civil engineering continues, and for the second year in a row, the prestigious Construction News awards has named one of our female civil engineers as a finalist in their Rising Star category.
Our Safety The safety of our employees, our contractors and our customers has always been the most important part of our business, and never more so than in recent times. Zero Harm is our driving force, consistent with our parent companies; our philosophy is that no task is so important that we cannot make time and investment to ensure it is done with safety foremost in mind. Our Health & Safety team, with eight decades of collective experience, continue to maintain this approach.
Our Collaboration Customer focus has been a driving theme of our year. Our relationship with our client, our communities, stakeholders and supply chain has gone from strength to strength, bringing them to the heart of the planning and programming of our works.
Our Successes Our close working relationship with Transport Scotland and Performance Audit Group (PAG) allowed us to regroup and reconsider our Winter Service approach which paid dividends in our 2019/20 winter service delivery. This significantly improved across what was a long and challenging winter period, with our Network and Operations teams receiving worthy praise. The Future As from August this year, we hand over the reins of the south west trunk road operating contract to a new operating company. After seven years in post, we believe we have made significant improvements in service delivery â€“ setting the bar for the future of the network. Our successors will inherit a network and a committed team of exceptionally high standard. Our people have made the success of the 4G contract a reality and I am sure they will continue to have a positive part to play in the continuation of trunk road maintenance in the south west unit of Scotland.
Andrew Blanch Operating Company Representative
Our Safety The health and safety of our employees, our contractors and our customers â€“ South West Scotlandâ€™s road users, is of paramount importance to Scotland TranServ, our client Transport Scotland and our joint venture parent companies.
Working in collaboration with Transport Scotland and our Operating Company counterparts, Scotland TranServ plays a part in driving an annual Road Worker Safety Campaign, raising awareness of abuse, both verbal and physical, that our road workers receive on a daily basis, as they simply carry out their job. The campaign, promoted across the country, has witnessed some traction, with a 12% year-on-year reduction in verbal abuse (65%), a 3% reduction in employees experiencing direct physical abuse (14%), and a 12% decrease in reported missiles being thrown at our workers, with almost one in three (31%) revealing that they had objects aimed at them by passing motorists. No-one should face such levels of public abuse as they work tirelessly to make our trunk roads safer for us all.
Operating under a Zero Harm philosophy, it is our absolute belief that, within our daily working; no task should be carried out, without safety being the single most important aspect of each and every person who works for, and on behalf of Scotland TranServ, and that it is their personal responsibility to ensure the safety of both themselves and their colleagues. As such, 96% of employees have completed Making Safety Personal (MSP) training, with a further 58 subcontractors within our supply chain also completing MSP1 and MSP4 instruction. From our Joint Venture Board directors, to our Senior Management Team and Operatives, Scotland TranServ drives a personal mission to improve health and safety across our businesses, our supply chain and wider industry. Every employee, whether working on the trunk road or in the office, are encouraged to make health and safety observations. Across our business, 651 such observations were raised during 2019/20. Our management team is also tasked with carrying out site safety observations on our trunk roads. Last year we recorded a 2% increase in the number of inspections, with 153 of these overnight.
Towards the end of 2019/20, the COVID-19 pandemic has presented some of the most challenging conditions our Health and Safety team has witnessed in their combined 70-years experience. Fresh and innovative working practices have been developed and tested within a short space of time, and new PPE, equipment and signage has been quickly installed across our business. We continue to meet the challenges coronavirus presents to our company, and to identify solutions to protect the safety of our workers and our supply chain partners.
Our People Scotland TranServ’s greatest asset continues to be our highly qualified and highly trained workforce, and we have remained committed to their further development throughout 2019/20. We have increased our diverse workforce by 11% to 278 during the last twelve months. Many of our roles remain specialist civil engineering positions, and a reflection of the drive and determination of our workforce has been the internal promotion of 9 employees, eager to develop their careers within the south west trunk road contract. We also continue to invest in this talent and develop them both as employees and individuals. As such we have delivered over 8,000 hours of professional development training for our employees across depots in Ayr, Dumfries and Polmadie. Investing in our people and their future careers is a priority to Scotland TranServ. We also take strong responsibility to encourage more young people into the civil engineering field. We continue to work with universities across the region, currently employing 26 graduates, many of whom started their TranServ careers as summer placements. We currently have two apprentices who are undertaking a wide range of duties to enhance their engineering skills.
During 2019/20, Scotland TranServ has been committed to the further education of our employees through university and college day or block release. TranServ and our parent companies have supported 20 employees towards qualifications ranging from SVQs to Honours and Masters degrees, over the last year. Scotland TranServ employees, through their weekly Dress Down Friday fundraising and other efforts throughout the year have helped to support 21 charities during 2019/20. Organisations, both within our communities and internationally have benefitted from our efforts. Most notably this year, some of our team helped to raise over £5,000 for Prostate Scotland after one of our colleagues was diagnosed with the condition. Fundraising efforts culminated in eight members of our team running the Tough Mudder at Drumlanrig Castle in June. Through our Employee Assistance Programme, Scotland TranServ continues to support employees, providing confidential information and counselling wherever necessary. Eleven of our employees have been fully trained as mental health first aiders, while 93% of our workers have completed ‘Start the Conversation’ training, which raises the awareness on the early signs of mental health concerns.
Scotland TranServ works in collaboration with our communities to carefully plan and programme the maintenance of our trunk roads, providing community councils and key stakeholders with advance notification of our intended programmes, sometimes up to a year in advance. Together, we work to identify those sections most in need of repair and to schedule these projects out-with peak holiday and event periods, where possible reducing the impact on commuters, businesses and holidaymakers. In association with Transport Scotland and our in-house Communications team, the Design and Network departments promote these work schemes in advance using a variety of media and roadside signage, to minimise any potential disruption on the community. Radio and newspaper advertising are combined with social media posts and more traditional postcard and poster formats to inform as wide a local audience as possible, allowing drivers to plan their journeys accordingly. As part of Transport Scotlandâ€™s strategic trunk road management programme, during 2019/20 Scotland TranServ resurfaced 51 kilometres of trunk road, a 19% increase on the previous year.
Inspecting and Maintaining Our Roads From Loch Lomond to Stranraer and Gretna, a total of 52 essential maintenance schemes were delivered during the 12-month period, seven more than during 2018/19. Of all our routes, receiving the most resurfacing schemes were the A75 with twelve, and the A77 with ten.
The team keeps the Scottish Roadworks Register and Traffic Scotlandâ€™s Roadworks Module updated, the foundations of journey time reliability for our customers. Working directly with the Scottish Road Works Commissioner, we drive improvements and greater compliance across our responsible domains. We provide a principal role in the managing of planning applications within close proximity of our network. These range from the construction of major shopping centres and housing developments to minor structural alterations.
Category 1 defects are those faults that are identified as requiring urgent repair. Through our enhanced inspection and reporting methods, both self-identifying defects and working collaboratively with our customers, Scotland TranServ identified and repaired 13,035 CAT1 defects across our network. This marks a 34% increase on the previous year, and the identification and repair of more than 65,000 such trunk road defects throughout the contract period. Our Traffic team play an integral part in a number of road network planning committees including the West of Scotland (WOSRAUC) and South West of Scotland (SWRAUC) Roads Authority and Utilities Committees. They attended a total of 33 liaison meetings with local authorities, emergency services and event planners during 2019/20, while a further four such meetings were cancelled during March 2020 due to Covid-19 restrictions.
Case Study: Echelon Paving Scotland TranServ, on behalf of Transport Scotland, recently utilised echelon paving techniques in the resurfacing of the M74 Northbound between junctions 3A and 3.
The joint between lanes is often the first part of the surface to fail, with water slowly seeping into the tiny crevices in between. The constant freeze-thaw cycle of the Scottish winter gradually begins to break apart the road, causing potholes. Reducing the opportunities for this to develop, deliver a longer-lasting, more resilient road surface.
The resurfacing system requires two pavers (or an extra wide paver) working side-by-side to lay two lanes of surface course, with multiple road rollers then compacting the hot materials evenly. Because the technique lays the road hot to hot, rather than hot material on to cold, the joints are stronger.
TranServ’s Design Manager, Evan Ferguson added: “Despite using double the normal resources, echelon paving is more effective when operationally possible. The resurfacing is quicker, but requires a greater orchestration, with particular concentration on health and safety. The health and safety of our workers, contractors and motorists is of paramount concern for Scotland TranServ. With more workers and more vehicles on site, we all need to work together to keep each other safe.”
Kevin Dunn, Scotland TranServ’s Pavement Manager said: “This is the first time that this technique has been used on the South West Scotland network. Because the system requires more space and double the resources, our opportunity to use echelon paving techniques have been rare. The M74 at this juncture is three lanes wide, and working under an overnight lane closure allowed our teams the space and time to lay this more durable road surface.”
On behalf of Transport Scotland, Scotland TranServ manages and maintains more than 1500 structures across South West Scotland. These range from motorway gantries and lighting masts to the Erskine Bridge, which connects 40,000 vehicles travelling from Dumbarton, Loch Lomond and Argyll with the busy Central Belt; and one of Europe’s busiest urban river crossings, the Kingston Bridge, carrying more than 100,000 vehicles each day. These Network and Major Bridges are a key part of our 636-kilometre network and require continuous inspection and maintenance from our specialist engineers. Each day and night, these highly trained and dedicated personnel complete hundreds of routine assessments, with 713 Principal and General Inspections completed between the February and November. A total of 47 half-joint inspections were carried out on our Major and Network bridges, with four cycles of visual inspections to the Kingston Bridge Complex’s 156 half joints and three post tensioned special inspections completed in 2019/20. As part of Transport Scotland’s structural maintenance programme £10.2million was invested in South West Scotland’s Network Bridges and Structures. In the far south west of the region, works began on the stabilisation of the A77 Carlock Wall. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, it was necessary to pause works.
Maintaining Our Structures It was a similar story for the A726 College Milton Rail Bridge refurbishment in East Kilbride, with works suspended in March 2020. At New Ramhill a quarter million pounds programme delivered bridge deck concrete repairs, waterproofing, resurfacing and joint replacements on the A75, just outside Castle Douglas.
Working alongside contractors Spencers and COWI, the Erskine Bridge was slowly raised and the old bearings removed, with replacement finally taking place in March 2020. Working closely with Transport Scotland and colleagues in the Communications team, the works and subsequent overnight closure of the bridge were widely promoted using widespread radio and newspaper advertising campaigns, the design and printing of thousands of information postcards and posters, and the extensive use of social media to advise drivers of any potential impact on their journeys.
To improve worker safety at motorway gantries, high containment safety barriers & hardstandings with access paths were installed at eight locations along our section of the M8 corridor. Further to this the South West Structures Access Improvements programme has also delivered access/safety improvements at 14 structures across the network.
Installation of an innovative under deck walkway and spiral access staircases was completed at the M8 White Cart Viaduct near Glasgow Airport. The new system delivers a safe, future ready solution, allowing engineers ease of access to complete inspections and remedial works on this vital trunk road asset.
A further ÂŁ6.8million was invested in Transport Scotlandâ€™s Major Bridges across the region. Most significantly this included the replacement of the A898 Erskine Bridge South Abutment bearings, which had remained in place since completion of the crossing in 1971, and were beginning to reach the end of their maintainable lifecycle. The project, which was initially planned to take place over four consecutive weekends, was severely hampered by a series of Yellow Weather Warnings from the Met Office, including Ciara and Dennis.
Case Study: In Situ Recycling During 2019/20, under structural maintenance programmes alone, Scotland TranServ resurfaced 51 kilometres of trunk road on behalf of Transport Scotland.
TranServâ€™s Pavement Team, with more than 140 years of collective experience, worked in collaboration with its specialist supply chain and researched the market to identify sustainable solutions. As such we found innovative In-situ and Ex-situ methods that upon further research, were found to have potential for use on the south west network. Both solutions could be quickly implemented and capable of delivering significant environmental, economic and safety benefits.
As we identify maintenance schemes, particularly those on our remote trunk roads, we have found that many of them still contain tar, now classified as a special waste. The use of tar dates back to the mid 1800â€™s, but was phased out by the 1990s. As a responsible operating company, working in collaboration with Transport Scotland, we have been working to deliver a positive environmental solution.
In-situ recycling involves a chain of on-site processing and paving machinery that processes the existing pavement materials into a new material. Similarly, Ex-situ recycling involves a similar process, however materials are taken to a nearby facility for processing.
There are currently no specialist waste management facilities in Scotland. The nearest such centres are located at Middlesbrough and Huddersfield in the north of England. Even from the nearest reaches of our network in Gretna, this is a roundtrip of more than 200 miles for each construction wagon.
Scotland TranServ utilised both systems on schemes during 2019/20. In-situ recycling was used in the resurfacing of a kilometre of the A76 trunk road at Polneul, between New Cumnock and Kirkconnel in September. And, in a halfmillion pounds scheme, 800metres of the A75 through Springholm, west of Dumfries was resurfaced using ex-situ recycling.
These facilities are not recycling centres, waste materials are sent to landfill. With stretches of these trunk roads reaching the end of their maintainable life, they are now being considered for structural rehabilitation. It was therefore important to Scotland TranServ and Transport Scotland to identify a sustainable method for dealing with the waste from these sites.
In what was a first for a Scottish trunk road, TranServ used a modernised in-situ recycling method at Polneul on the A76. TranServ engineers reported 758 tonnes of special waste would be required for disposal. The roundtrip distance from the site location to the nearest disposal facility at Middlesbrough is 317 miles. It would have been necessary to use 38 construction wagons to transport this waste material, travelling over 12,000 miles. By using in-situ recycling we saved the equivalent lorry miles of travelling from Kilmarnock to Christchurch (New Zealand). There was a similar saving in the use of virgin aggregates. The method also delivered on safety for the local community, reducing the need for heavy vehicles to thunder through Sanquhar, Thornhill and Dumfries. While the economic savings were minimal, it is the significantly more important savings of time, reduced disruption, environmental impact, waste to landfill and road safety that make this an effective solution.
Our Winter Service For Scotland TranServ, Winter Planning is a year-round process, while our Winter Service runs from October to May annually. Our fleet were quickly called into action on the first day of winter 2019/20. October was recorded as one of the coldest on record for several decades*. During winter we recorded a low of -9.3 on the Erskine Bridge.
Scotland TranServ continuously strives to improve the environmental performance of its winter fleet, utilising technology to drive down salt wasteage and improve efficiency, supporting our delivery of a high quality, sustainable programme. As a leader in winter service innovation we continue to utilise route-based forecasting and GPS controlled spreading, allowing us to deliver a more efficient and effective winter service to our customers across South West Scotland.
Scotland TranServâ€™s Winter Service delivery team comprises a hundred highly trained and experienced operatives, who receive a continuous stream of onsite training from our own qualified training team. Our operatives delivered a 24/7 service, completing 1785 treatments, a 34% increase on the previous year, and 725 winter patrols, up 25% on 2018/19 figures. Each year, across our depots in Polmadie, Ayr and Dumfries and Galloway, we store 19,000 tonnes of salt. Throughout winter 2019/20 we used over 12,000 tonnes of salt, an increase of almost 82% on the milder 2018/19 winter.
We encountered significant challenges through the 2018/19 winter season. Scotland TranServ took stock of such challenges in advance, pre-planning robustly with colleagues from Transport Scotland and the Performance Audit Group (PAG). Such proactive thinking has helped us achieve an excellent 2019/20 winter performance. Our Network Control Room also provides an essential part of our Winter Service delivery, with six of the team trained Winter Service Duty Officers. Around the clock, they monitor forthcoming and live weather information, managing the delivery of our action plans throughout the winter season, ensuring a strategic overview to the delivery of our services.
Across 22 winter service routes we use a solution of 70% salt to 30% brine. This helps to reduce our impact on the environment, through reduced salt usage, better binding it to the road surface. Remaining routes, including footways are treated with 100% brine, while routes including the Kingston and Erskine Bridges, the Whitecart Viaduct and St James Interchange were treated with over 160,000 litres of potassium acetate.
*Met Office Weather Summaries: October 2019
Improving Our Network Appearance Until the coronavirus outbreak and subsequent restrictions, Glasgow and South West Scotland was to host two very special international events, the UEFA European Nations football finals, and the COP 26, United Nations Climate Change Conference, both of which have since been postponed.
All year round, Scotland TranServ works in close collaboration with local authorities to carefully orchestrate our cyclic maintenance activities, reducing disruption for motorists. The cutting of 25,000,000m2 of grass verge, cleaning 42,600 traffic signs, posts and markers, lifting 5,750 manhole covers, emptying 26,300 gullies and clearing 17 kilometres of roadside drainage, have all been completed as part of these routine responsibilities.
Through our innovative â€˜Enhanced Maintenance Programmeâ€™ (EMP), Scotland TranServ was playing its part in preparing the region for the arrival of thousands of visitors. The trunk road maintenance programme concentrated on improving the look of the routes that our customers use every day. The EMP involved the cleaning of signs and gullies, sweeping of roads, lifting of litter and removing debris, the cutting of grass verges, clearing of vegetation, relining of road markings and the replacement of road studs. This intensive three-month programme was designed to improve our network in the South West, showcase the city and create a positive first and lasting impression.
The removal of litter, carelessly discarded by a minority of drivers, is a dangerous and disruptive task for our Operatives. Often traffic management is required to remove the cans, plastic bottles and takeaway waste that motorists and passengers needlessly throw from their windows on motorway slip roads and at traffic lights. Our teams are required to work on the trunk roads, just feet from speeding cars and lorries, to remove this unnecessary mess. During 2019/20, Scotland TranServ removed 6,000 bags of litter and 3,700 items of large debris from South West Scotlandâ€™s roadside verges, including 79 tyres.
We’re working with national environment charity, Keep Scotland Beautiful and our Operating Company counterparts, to highlight the impact of litter on our trunk roads. The ‘Give Your Litter A Lift’ campaign has identified that 50 tonnes of rubbish is removed from Scotland’s roadsides each month. During 2019/20, the organisation identified that 91% of people living in Scotland agreed that roadside litter creates a negative impression of our country. Keep Scotland Beautiful is working alongside Scotland TranServ and a number of international fast food and soft drink manufacturers to raise awareness on the issue and help to identify a solution.
Scotland TranServ identified Glasgowâ€™s St Georgeâ€™s Road and associated M8 pathways and underpasses as requiring significant maintenance in order to make them more inviting as public thoroughfares. While green with self-seeding trees and bushes, they had become overgrown during summer and turned slippy with autumn leaf fall, becoming a potentially hazardous for pedestrians and cyclists. Thick vegetation around sharp, bending slip roads limited visibility for drivers. And, for broken down motorists, there was little safe standing room on the verge where they could await recovery vehicles. Glasgow is the first destination for more than 2million tourists flocking to Scotland each year, delivering a billion pounds into the local economy. Soon, those figures will be boosted as hundreds of thousands of football fans descend on the city for the rescheduled European Championships, and the COP26 Climate Change Conference. Millions of visitors will use this thoroughfare connecting the bustling city centre with the vibrant West End, full of bars, restaurants and attractions.
Case Study: M8 Let in the Light The 100,000 vehicles using this section of the M8 daily and the thousands of commuters and businesses taking adjacent slip roads and city centre roads make this a strategic route for the local economy.
Our objectives were to cut back and remove ground vegetation, strip back low-lying branches of the self-seeding trees that had infested the area (crown lifting), improve sight-lines on sliproads, and clear drains blocked by decaying leaves and plant matter.
With shops and tenement flats above, there is a 24-hour thrum to the area, making it incredibly difficult to access and deliver works. Any vegetation clearance must also be sensitive to the aesthetics and noise limitations of the community. Both pedestrians and cyclists heavily use the pathways, and so even accessing the footways is difficult.
In order to reduce disruption, Scotland TranServâ€™s Cyclic Operations team worked overnight, stripping back approximately 200 trees and removed 1000m2 of vegetation. Safety zones were created behind barriers, for drivers stranded on motorway slip-roads. Grassy areas were restored, with weeds and shrubs removed, making the area less prone to litter and easier to maintain.
Vegetation was thick, from the ground up to the treetops. With accessibility to carry out such works difficult, the area required continuous cutting back to alleviate footpaths and slip roads. Ground cover had therefore grown quite thick in the core of the area and litter had gathered, making it unsightly.
The tree canopy was all that was retained, allowing more of the recently fitted, directional LED lighting through at night, ensuring that the area was perceptibly brighter; while keeping the aesthetics for the neighbouring tenement properties and ensuring that the natural sound filter of the upper tree line remained.
Working alongside the local authority, it was our aim to create an area that was brighter, greener and better reflected the attitude of the city, ensuring that walking and cycling were an attractive alternative commute into the city centre.
In the longer-term more sensitive planting of low lying shrubbery is intended, removing blank spaces, while ensuring the area remains tidy, aesthetically pleasing and that we continue to let in the light.
Making Our Roads Safer Scotland TranServ’s Strategic Road Safety team has continued to play their part in saving lives on South West Scotland’s trunk roads. Working in close collaboration with Transport Scotland and their innovative supply chain partners, they are eradicating long-term road safety issues on a network that combines remote rural routes with some of the busiest motorways in the country.
Scotland TranServ continues to work closely with innovative developer, Neatebox. Further sites have been identified for the Bluetooth technology. Neatebox has this year been installed in crossings in Dumbarton and Girvan. We continue to develop the hands-free solution, devising a Horse Crossing for the Bargower Riding for the Disabled school outside Kilmarnock on the busy A76 trunk road. Further such applications are in the pipeline as the collaboration works to enhance accessibility for diverse customer groups.
With more than a century of combined Road Safety experience, the team never loses sight of the fact that each statistic is a life, a family and a community affected by a road traffic accident. They sift through Transport Scotland’s Annual Road Safety Report to identify those sections of trunk road reporting greatest risk. Since the start of the current South West Scotland trunk road maintenance contract, the Strategic Road Safety team has played a significant part in making our roads safer.
The A701 ‘Close Follow’ vehicle activated signage solution has matured throughout its first year of operation. Installed in March 2019, digital signage immediately notifies drivers of their tailgating behaviour on the busy Dumfries and Galloway trunk road, which connects the M74 motorway with Dumfries and the A75. Three accidents were reported on the trunk road during this initial 2019/20 operating period, a reduction of seven on figures for the previous twelve months.
The total number of accidents has significantly fallen, from 425 in 2013/14 to 257 in 2019/20. While the number of fatalities has fallen from 15 in 2013/14 to 6 in 2019/20, there is no room for complacency. This is still not good enough and we work tirelessly towards Zero Harm, a target we should all strive to achieve.
The work of our Strategic Road Safety team, their specialist supply chain and Transport Scotland continues to be recognised by industry bodies. During 2019/20, the team won the Road Safety, Traffic Management & Enforcement category at the National Transport Awards, and took home the Most Effective in Road Safety, Traffic Management and Enforcement prize at the Scottish Transport Awards. Senior Site Engineer, Bill Smith also received the highly prestigious Lynda Chalker Lifetime Achievement Award from Road Safety GB for more than four decades of outstanding service across the industry.
In November 2014, inspections of the A76 between Sanquhar and Thornhill revealed that the supporting embankment between the trunk road and the River Nith was showing signs of movement. Operating company, Scotland TranServ therefore immediately reduced the trunk road, in this section to a single lane, in order to take vehicles away from the compromised safety barrier, reduce the wider pressure on the embankment and to protect the safety of the travelling public. TranServ looked to joint venture parent company, WSP and existing supply chain partners to begin the complex programme of geotechnical ground investigations. From this a series of engineering options were identified and carefully reviewed by collaborators, Jacobs, as together we honed in on potential long-term solutions to the conditions facing the trunk road. Working in collaboration with Transport Scotland, a final solution was identified and Scotland TranServ initiated the detailed design process. Looking to parent company Balfour Beatty for civil engineering construction and project management expertise, a civil engineering programme was developed for delivery within a challenging timeframe and budget.
Case Study: Enterkinfoot Road Realignment The A76 is a lifeline for a number of communities, linking Dumfries and Galloway to Ayrshire. Because of the complexities of the programme, and the lengthy ground investigation and design phase, it was essential that Scotland TranServ continued to keep communities updated, while the lane closure remained in place throughout.
Road safety measures were implemented with the A76 taken away from the embankment, and previously existing sharp bends straightened to reduce risk to drivers. The team also worked in collaboration with SEPA to ensure that every possible environmental measure was taken to protect the sensitive ecology of this stunning area, and the silvery winding Nith below. The team implemented a number of environmental measures including:
Balancing the needs of all stakeholders, while delivering a project of this complexity is challenging, and therefore requires an innovative, inclusive and collaborative approach.
New drainage designed on either side of the new trunk road, to SUDs with filter drains and catch pits to protect the sensitive environment Team worked with SEPA and the River Nith Fisheries Board to install surface water drainage outfalls, inserting rock mattresses to break powerful flow of water, reducing risk of erosion to river bank
Design team worked with colleagues in Media & Communications to deliver a programme of community engagement, consultation and communication. This involved: Development emarketing platforms into specific TranServ consultation tool, with easy response button, and reporting functionality Engagement events at Thornhill, Sanquhar and Galloway Country Fayre Distributed 2000 project postcards; designed in-house, providing information and contacts Wallet-sized cards providing link to TranServâ€™s wider Project Map Radio and newspaper adverts across D&G keeping drivers updated on key developments
Collaboratively, the team delivered around a kilometre of new trunk road on budget and ahead of programme in December 2019
Our Environment Scotland TranServ continues to actively seek opportunities for improvement in the sustainable performance of our projects and to promote environmental enhancement as part of our assessment regime. In particular, the focus of our Environment and Sustainability team throughout 2019/20 has been protection of wildlife from vehicle collision and noise management in support of the Transportation Noise Action Plan for Scotland. We also continue to actively reduce the environmental impact of our resurfacing programme.
Wildlife roadside reflectors will shortly be installed at selected hotspots, deterring deer from entering the carriageway. Similar reflectors have been installed on the A78 where a high incidence of Otter deaths was also identified. As part of Transport Scotland’s strategic programme to address traffic noise under the Transportation Noise Action Plan, we completed a noise mitigation pilot project. Construction of a noise barrier on the A82 will help reduce road traffic noise disturbance to residents. A further two sites have been identified as we develop plans for a wider noise mitigation pilot programme.
As part of our Deer Management Planning activities, we collect deer vehicle collision data, which helps to identify ‘hotspots’ on the network. Annually across the UK, 40,000 deer are killed as a result of vehicle strikes. Subsequently it is estimated that such collisions result in 400 injuries to vehicle passengers. Temporary warning signs were installed at these hotspots during the highest incident periods, when deer behaviour puts them at the most risk of vehicle collision. An extensive media campaign also helped raise driver awareness.
Work has meanwhile continued on our long-term Noise Attenuation Impact Study. Presented at the Traffex Scotland conference in 2019, our study investigates the longer term effect of road surface wear on traffic noise and confirm the noise attenuation properties of TS2010 road surfacing material.
As part of our ongoing efforts to improve the sustainability of our resurfacing programme, we strive to reduce material use and maximise the recovery and re-use of any unavoidable waste. We have found that many of our remote trunk roads still contain coal tar, a hazardous substance requiring specialist treatment or disposal. To address this, our Pavement team trialled the use of in-situ recycling, which involves a chain of on-site processing and paving machinery to transform the existing pavement materials into a new material. In September 2019, the system was used in the resurfacing of a kilometre of the A76 at Polneul, between New Cumnock and Kirkconnel. Around 758 tonnes of special waste would have ordinarily required disposal, however by using in-situ recycling, rather than waste disposal, we saved the equivalent lorry miles of travelling from Kilmarnock to Christchurch, New Zealand.
Charing Cross Underpass is one of the most strategic elements of Scotland’s busiest motorway, the M8, connecting Glasgow’s bustling city centre to the West End and Scotland’s Central Belt. Through a programme of overnight working, Scotland TranServ, on behalf of Transport Scotland, has already replaced 2000 of the M8’s orange High Pressure Sodium lanterns with modern, energy-efficient LED lights. This has delivered an annual energy saving equivalent to powering c.600 homes. In 2017, a traffic incident involving an HGV damaged the underpass’s lighting tray. Further investigations discovered that the galvanised steel containment system, was reaching the end of its maintainable life. Specialist contractors SPIE UK, who had worked on the original repair work, continued their relationship with TranServ and Transport Scotland, making recommendations on the replacement programme. It was important that, in line with the wider M8 LED replacement programme, that the Charing Cross underpass lighting initiative was futureproofed and capable of tying in with a proposed artificial intelligence model that will phase lighting according to traffic volumes.
Case Study: M8 Charing Cross Underpass LED With location and intensity of traffic movements, it was also essential that the system could stand alone, particularly during days where the contrast in lighting conditions between the underpass and wider network was greatest.
Most importantly, the Charing Cross Underpass lighting system has a fully automated central system that adapts to the ambient light of the day. This helps to improve driver safety within the underpass as it reduces the transition time from bright daylight to the underpassâ€™s lighting.
Working alongside Transport Scotland and specialist industry partners SPIE UK and Signify, Scotland TranServ has developed a robust, long-term initiative that will deliver on elements of road safety, resilience, energy efficiency and cost.
LED lighting, which is perceptibly brighter for drivers, also improves safety through better colour rendering. White light helps motorists to more clearly identify kerbs, colours and carriageway defects. A longer-term study is planned to more robustly identify strategic road safety benefits.
Due to the corrosive environment within the underpass, Scotland TranServâ€™s expert lighting team replaced the previous galvanised steel containment unit with a more robust stainless steel option. It was installed as per DMRB requirements, with a design life of 50 years.
The solution also incorporates Uninterruptable Power Supply back up to enhance security and durability and includes remote monitoring. Such advanced monitoring of energy usage is essential for TranServ and Transport Scotland, as we look to drive efficiencies and meet environmental targets.
New energy-efficient LED lighting was installed, replacing the previous orange HPS system. Like its motorway equivalent, this new lighting delivers a 60% energy saving across the underpass. The lighting has a lifespan of 25 years therefore requiring less maintenance, reducing driver disruption and costs. In line with the existing M8 LED lighting system, there is longer-term potential for connection into an innovative Central Management System.
By combining advanced LED technology with robust infrastructure and future-proofed monitoring capabilities this solution will help to keep traffic flowing and drivers safe for generations to come.
Our Communities We engage with our communities at multiple levels and through a continuous stream of both traditional and digital platforms, consulting and informing on our trunk road maintenance and improvement programmes, and answering enquiries from our customers and stakeholders.
We engaged our communities, keeping them involved and informed throughout the consultation process, responding quickly to their enquiries. On behalf of Transport Scotland, we responded to 56 requests under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002. Correspondence remained steady, with 333 public responses, a total of 136 to MSP and MPs, and 14 to councillors representing wards across the South West region.
As such, our Communications team issued over 110 press releases to media and stakeholders across South West Scotland, during 2019/20. We also issued 41 responses to enquiries from media outlets during this time. Broadcasters across the South West region were also engaged in the promotion of resurfacing projects, and drivers advised of their potential impact through 35 radio advertising campaigns. Dozens of local newspaper adverts also promoted forthcoming works throughout our communities.
Scotland TranServ works closely with councils, emergency services and key stakeholders in the planning and promotion of our maintenance and trunk road improvement programme. To best manage journey time reliability, particularly around the organisation of large events, we widely consult our communities, participating in 33 Local Authority and Police Liaison meetings during 2019/20, while a further four were cancelled during March 2020 under Covid-19 guidelines.
Scotland TranServ works closely with Traffic Scotland in the promotion of forthcoming works, utilising our social media channels, and in particular the Operating Companiesâ€™ preferred Twitter platform. During 2019/20 our Communications and Control Centre teams issued 11,513 tweets, an 18% increase on the previous 12 months. Tweet impressions also rose significantly to nearly 41million, up 44% on 2018/19 statistics. Our website, developed inhouse, reflected a strong performance, with more than 7million hits recorded during the year.
The Communications team supports colleagues in the submission of award entries. Last year we further increased our haul, winning six awards and a prestigious Chartered Institute of Public Relations' Mark of Excellence for our collaborative efforts with Transport Scotland, Traffic Scotland and Operating Company counterparts. We have won 14 such awards, eight with Transport Scotland.
Case Study: SmartSTEMs Scotland TranServ has always worked hard to engage and inspire future generations of civil engineers, concentrating on communities neighbouring our trunk road network. Another important aspect of this educational activity has been the promotion, in particular, of engineering careers for young women, working hard to help address the gender imbalance across our wider industry. We have always been keen supporters of the Women in Engineering movement.
Scotland TranServ has already participated in six of these events during 2019/20. We began our SmartSTEMs journey at the University of West of Scotland, working to promote civil engineering careers to young women from across Renfrewshire and Lanarkshire. Wider collaborations at Glasgow Caledonian University, West Lothian College and Glasgow Clyde College campuses followed. The events also allow us to interact with engineering students to more immediately promote our business to potential employees, and for them to interact with our Graduate Engineers and other members of our team.
In an effort to increase our engagement in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) we have worked with both schools and universities, whether through Name-A-Gritter, Go4Set, student placement or post-graduate programmes. During 2019/20, we identified an organisation that could help us to increase such activity across a broader spectrum of learning. SmartSTEMs is a Glagowbased charity, working predominantly with young people aged 10 â€“ 14, across both the Primary School and Secondary School year groups.
Like Scotland TranServ, SmartSTEMs has been a winner of the Herald and GenAnalytics National Diversity awards. The organisation has also won the Inspiring City Awards and Scottish Women in Technology Awards, with further shortlisting at the Herald Digital Business Awards and Scottish Cyber Awards. Through the SmartSTEMs hub events during 2019/20 alone, Scotland TranServ has helped to inspire thousands of young people from schools across Glasgow, Renfrewshire, East Renfrewshire, North Lanarkshire, South Lanarkshire and West Lothian, encouraging them to look more closely at future careers in civil engineering.
SmartSTEMs works in association with colleges and universities to host localised hub events. Schools from across each region are invited to attend, creating strong bonds between schools and local employers. More than 10,000 young people have already attended these events, participating in fun employer workshops and listening to inspirational speakers.
Our Customer Response Directed from our Network Control Centre in our Glasgow office (Polmadie), Scotland TranServâ€™s Trunk Road Incident Support Service (TRISS) and Incident Support Unit (ISU) support Police Scotland in maintaining journey time reliability across Scotlandâ€™s busiest trunk road network. The TRISS team is responsible for quickly attending incidents on the motorways surrounding Glasgow, including the M8, M77, M74, M80, M898, A898, A737 and A82.
The TRISS team operates 7 days a week, patrolling and assisting through both the busy morning and evening commuter peaks. Two specially equipped vehicles are operated by our eight highly trained and experienced support officers, working on a rota across the week, and even through the Festive period and holidays. Incident Support Units are active throughout the day, operating an on-call service overnight. Located at depots in Glasgow, Ayr and Dumfries, these eight skilled and efficient trunk road specialists quickly attend reported incidents, some on the most remote sections of the south west network.
In support of Police Scotland during 2019/20, our response teams assisted on 1,097 incidents, an increase of 30% on the previous 12 months. Across the wider South West Scotland trunk road network, TRISS and ISU attended 6,595 incidents, an increase of 24% on 2018/19.
TRISS and ISU continued to work in support of emergency services throughout the challenging periods of the coronavirus pandemic, adapting their working methods and transportation to comply with social distancing requirements. They continued to play their significant part in keeping our trunk roads moving safely for essential NHS workers, freight and retail services.
The teams helped 2,642 stranded motorists to get back on their way, reducing disruption and maintaining journey time reliability. Often as first responders they attend collisions and sometimes fatal accidents on our trunk roads, sympathetically managing potentially harrowing situations with true professionalism and consideration.
At the heart of Scotland TranServâ€™s Incident Response effort is the Polmadie-based Network Control Centre. Monitoring more than 90 cameras across our network, this team of extremely experienced Incident Liaison Officers deliver a 24/7 surveillance service. Maintaining continuous communication with Traffic Scotland and Police Scotland, they answer emergency service radio calls and speak directly to our customers. During 2019/20, the team responded to 11,855 incidents. Throughout our winter period, the control centreâ€™s Winter Service Duty Officers, qualified through the Institute of Highways Engineers, continuously monitor the immediate conditions on our trunk roads, and work with specialist contractors to identify forthcoming weather events.
Case Study: Bargower Riding School Scotland TranServ has worked in collaboration with innovative start-up company, Neatebox and industry leaders Coeval to increase accessibility for visually and mobility-impaired pedestrians using our trunk road network. Bluetooth technology installed in our crossing boxes connects to Neateboxâ€™s smartphone app, allowing users to call the crossing from a safe distance, rather than precariously balancing wheelchairs, or feeling around for control boxes on the kerbside.
In Scotland alone, we have nearly 60 groups, and in Ayrshire, Argyll, Perthshire and the Central Belt thatâ€™s more than 800 disabled riders. The A76 is a busy freight route connecting Dumfries with the Central Belt. As such, it has a high percentage of HGVs, with thousands of vans and commuters also using the trunk road on a daily basis. Approaching and crossing the trunk road was previously said to make both horse and rider anxious, with horses often being skittish.
Our Strategic Road Safety team engaged directly with community groups to identify a need within our trunk road programme. Working directly with the Bargower Riding School, they identified a requirement to deliver greater accessibility, with the trunk road providing a potential barrier. The riding school is a hub for mobility-impaired people in a remote part of Scotland, providing a leisure activity that enhances communication skills, helps build relationships, improves physical health and altogether delivers empowerment.
Our Road Safety team, working collaboratively alongside fledgling tech innovators Neatebox and industry experts, Coeval developed a UK first in remote access pedestrian crossings, with the push-button facility replaced directly by a Bluetooth signal from the rider or volunteerâ€™s smartphone, with no distractions, without having to drop the reigns, and without the need to stand on the edge of the busy trunk road, thus significantly improving safety for rider, horse and driver.
Across the UK there are more than 500 RDA schools, with over 25,000 children and adults regularly engaging in activities, supported by 18,000 volunteers.
This year, our Strategic Road Safety team and Neatebox worked with the University of Strathclyde to identify new platforms through which to promote the initiative to a wider audience.
Our Financial & Performance Management
Our Responsible Financial Management Using Transport Scotland’s Integrated Roads Information System (IRIS), and driven by our sound financial management practices, Scotland TranServ has continued to deliver on strict budgetary controls. We have continued to report our financial performance throughout 2019/20 using this platform. We have also continued to report promptly each month to the Performance Audit Group (PAG) using the profile template as collaboratively developed in year one of our contract.
During 2019/20, Transport Scotland increased Scotland TranServ’s initial budget allocation from £53.8million to £64.2million. This additional budget was largely included in the Minor Improvements allocation, in order to deliver the Enterkinfoot Road Realignment and LED lighting projects. There were also increased spending on Structural Maintenance (+18.5%), Routine Maintenance (+7.8%) and Structures (+0.2%). Meanwhile our Strategic Road Safety budget remained steady at £2million. Across the duration of the contract our budget has increased by 79%, from an initial budget of £35.88million in 2013/14 to £64.2million in 2019/20.
Scotland TranServ balanced all budgetary revisions to meet pre-identified allocations across multiple budget streams, ensuring that the 2019/20 available budget was expended in line with budgetary levels as set by Scottish Ministers.
A route-by-route chart of our total investment is provided opposite.
In accordance with contractual requirements, our draft one and three year maintenance programmes were submitted in August 2019 and our detailed one year programme submitted in November 2019, with spend profiled in accordance with budgetary levels as identified by Scottish Ministers.
Our Delivery Scotland TranServ’s initial budget allocation of £53.8million was increased by Transport Scotland to £64.2million during 2019/20. Additional budget spend was allocated across the following areas:
In a carefully planned programme of work, the Erskine Bridge was jacked for the replacement of two 50-year old bridge bearings. The £520,000 project required a series of overnight closures of this major crossing in order that the south abutment could be lifted and bearings replaced. Phase 1 of the £18million Erskine Bridge Maintenance Painting programme began. The Spencer Group, is delivering the 4-year long project. An estimated 46,000 litres of paint will be required to paint 60,000m2 of steelwork, bridge deck and towers, 100m above the River Clyde.
Routine Maintenance Programme With an initial £17.8million budget for Routine Maintenance, Scotland TranServ was able to deliver improvements to the condition of the South West Scotland trunk road network. A 7.8% increase to £19.1million allowed for additional patching and maintenance schemes to be completed. The final budget allocation reflects a 3% increased spend across maintenance of the remaining ancillary assets from 2018/19, and a 27% increase on the 2013/14 contract allocation.
Structural Maintenance Programme Our Structural Maintenance team delivered 51 trunk road resurfacing schemes throughout 2019/20, with improvements to 51kilometres of the south west network. The £16million final Structural Maintenance budget reflects an increase of 18.5% on the initial 2019/20 allocation. Of the completed schemes, the 2.7kilometre resurfacing of the A76 South of Mennock was to be the longest delivered this year. However, the scheme was delayed due to coronavirus restrictions imposed at the end of March 2020. The A75 (12 schemes) and the A77 (10 schemes) received the highest number of resurfacing projects during 2019/20.
Bridges Programme Scotland TranServ’s Bridges budget for 2019/20 reflected a significant 20% increase on the previous year’s budget allocation. Throughout the year a further increase in budget was allocated to £17.9million. Among those projects receiving funding was the multi awardnominated refurbishment of 29 M8 Gantries, completed with minimal impact on the travelling public.
Minor Improvements Programme
Third Party Claims & Damages to Crown Property
Scotland TranServ’s Minor Improvement budget received a £6.5million increased allocation through 2019/20. Our LED lighting replacement programme, delivering long-term environmental, maintenance and cost benefits to Transport Scotland, received additional funding. Replacement of the previous High Pressure Sodium lighting with modern LED equivalents will deliver a 60% energy saving. The £2.8million Enterkinfoot Road project saw the realignment of the A76 to address an earlier landslip. Following an extensive geotechnical, study the carriageway was repositioned. Additional benefits included the resurfacing of a kilometre of trunk road and the improvement of the current horizontal alignment.
Scotland TranServ manages and progresses the resolution of Third Party Claims in as timely and efficient a manner as possible. We remain committed to the identification of Damage to Crown Property and the recovery of associated costs from those responsible wherever possible. Please see charts for further details on our Delivery Programme:
Strategic Road Safety Programme The Strategic Road Safety budget remained steady at £2million. The team has continued to utilise their budget to deliver innovative solutions to address the casualty risk on our trunk roads. Vehicle Activated Signage such as that employed as part of the A701 Close Follow initiative and A75 speed reduction programme continue to play a part in accident reduction across the network.
Our Management, Monitoring & Reporting Scotland TranServâ€™s Integrated Management System (IMS) continues to demonstrate improvement whilst remaining in compliance with the International Integrated Management Systems Standards of BS-EN-ISO 9001 (2015), BS-EN-ISO 14001 (2015) and BS-OHSAS 18001 (which is currently in transition to ISO45001:2018 under the parent company Balfour Beatty certification).
Our overarching Key Performance Indicator remained on target for the fourth year in a row, with the significant majority of our associated performance indicators stable and on or above target; or showing improvement on 2018/19. There were no Notices of Non Conformance (NNCs) issued by PAG during this period. Eight Remedial Notices were open at the beginning of the year. Through this year robust and collaborative actions have been agreed with Transport Scotland and PAG. This has resulted in a reduction to four remaining open at the yearend in March 2020. Of this four, a further three are now deemed complete, however Covid-19 has slowed the validation of such closures.
During the year we had a number of notable achievements: Maintained portfolio of direct works undertaken in compliance with National Highways Sector Schemes NHSS2A, NHSS 2B and 5B,NHSS7,NHSS 8, NHSS 10 B, NHSS 12A/B, NHSS 12C, NHSS 12D and NHSS 18,NHSS 23 and NHSS 30 bringing the total to 12 Schemes - the most held by one contract under the parent company NHSS certification, and
During 2019/20, Scotland TranServ had two audit certification visits from classification body DNV GL, one internal audit from parent company Balfour Beatty acknowledging good practice on demobilisation and our approach to the recent activation of our Business Continuity Plan and COVID-19 management, and two PAG audits of our integrated management system. All audits were returned positively, having failed to identify any significant areas of interest for further action. Details of our Performance and Monitoring Indicators are presented over the following pages:
Maintained ISO 44001 to support the Partnering Charter formally agreed in June 2018 and continued to develop a joint relationship management plan and associated arrangements in agreement with Transport Scotland and PAG.
Performance Review As part of the 4G contract, Scotland TranServ is required to submit Monitoring Indicators (MI) and Performance Indicators (PI). Areas performing below planned levels have been subject to improvement actions.
During 2019/20, there were 40 Key Business Indicators, full details of which are included in the following section:
Scotland TranServ is the trunk road operating company responsible for maintaining 600km of network from Loch Lomond to Stranraer and out to...
Published on Jun 22, 2020
Scotland TranServ is the trunk road operating company responsible for maintaining 600km of network from Loch Lomond to Stranraer and out to...