Surface dressing is undertaken by Leicestershire Highways as a major part of its on-going, low-cost annual maintenance programme.
The £2 million programme covers approximately 200 miles of county roads and commences in April, continuing through to September.
It is carried out at this time of year because bitumen and loose chippings bond to the road surface more effectively in warmer weather.
What is surface dressing?
Surface dressing provides added protection to the carriageway surface as well as enhancing the skid resistance, making it safer to drive on.
This added protection extends the life of the carriageway surface by up to 10 years.
The process entails spraying the road with bitumen and covering it with granite chippings, after which the road is then rolled, which along with the action of the traffic, embeds the chippings into the surface.
To complete the process, the excess chippings are then swept up. The first sweep takes place within 48 hours and at least two more sweepings take place within the following 28 days.
Any surplus chippings resulting from surface dressing operation are swept up and taken to a dedicated site, where they are washed and sorted and then re-used in the following year’s programme.
In addition to providing a significant contribution to the County Council’s sustainability programme, the re-use of these chippings provides an annual saving of approximately £40,000 per year.
Surface Dressing Schedule
The 2012 schedule is available here (PDF file).
Please be aware that scheduled work may be subject to change.
Please note, surface dressing is largely weather dependent and dates listed may be subject to alteration.
Action you need to take when your road is being surface dressed
- Ensure any parked cars are moved by 8.00am
- Avoid walking or driving on the carriageway until the bitumen has fully dried
- Take special care to keep children and pets away from treated areas
- The carriageway is safe to drive on following application of the chippings, provided speeds remain below 20mph. For your safety and the safety of others, please drive slowly, keep your distance, avoid turning or braking sharply and do not overtake
During the early life of the surface dressing:
- The bitumen used can become fluid during warm weather
- Bitumen and chippings could be picked up on footwear, wheelchairs, pushchairs, pets’ paws and carried into houses. The removal of bitumen is difficult and may result in permanent marking on your driveway and internal floors or carpets
Advisory speed restriction signs will be displayed where work is being carried out, to warn motorists about the chippings. Drivers are urged to keep to the speed limit to prevent damage to their cars or to the road surface.
Surface dressing is carried out by Leicestershire Highways Operations.
If you need to gain access to your property at any time during the surface dressing process, please ask a member of staff on site for assistance.
Every effort will be made to minimise disruption during the surface dressing process.
If you need more information or clarification on any of the points above, please call the Customer Service Centre, 0116 305 0001.
If you would like to report a problem please call the Customer Service Centre, 0116 305 0001 or use our online reporting form.
Page Last Updated: 13 May 2013