Gas, electricity, telecommunication and water supply companies are allowed to carry out work in the highway without getting permission from the Council. These companies are also known as 'Statutory Undertakers'.
If you are not a gas, electricity, telecommunication or water supply company you must get permission from South Tyneside Council before carrying out excavations on the highway.
The type of consent you need will depend on the nature and impact of the work you want to carry out.
The full Code of Practice should be consulted. Below is an extract of the Code of Practice referring to included and excluded works:
Work promoters (gas, electricity, telecommunication and water supply companies) must register, or notice, all works that:
involve the breaking up or resurfacing of any street
involve opening the carriageway or cycle of traffic-sensitive street at traffic-sensitive times
require any form of temporary traffic control as defined in the Code of Practice for Safety at Street Works and Road Works
reduce the lanes available on a carriageway of three or more lanes
require a temporary traffic regulation order or notice, or the suspension of pedestrian facilities
Work promoters do no need to register the following works in advance. However, where reinstatement is carried out it must be registered within 10 days of completion.
traffic census surveys - because disclosure prior to a census can encourage a change in normal traffic flows
pole testing involving excavation - does not require registration in advance, unless one or more of rules 2-6 above, apply
core holes - not exceeding 150mm in diameter do not require registration in advance, unless one or more of rules 2-6 above apply
road markings - that are not part of a larger set of works and do not reduce the width of the carriageway, as they do not involve breaking up of the highway
Works by developers
The requirements above also apply to developers.
Existing agreements to carry out highway works as part of the development, the granting of planning permission, or if there isn't a need to get planning permission, does not mean you are exempt from needing a licence before carrying out works in the highway and you must comply with the conditions of that licence.
If you are granted a licence for highway work you are not exempt from any planning or building regulations requirements which may exist.
Road opening notice
If you need to carry out excavations in the highway and no apparatus such as cables, pipes or sewers are involved, you will need to complete a road opening notice.
There is a fee for this which changes from time to time.
You must apply for a licence if you want to place new, or work on existing apparatus (eg cables, pipes or sewers) in the highway. This does not apply to certain gas, electricity, telecommunications and water supply companies.
This licence allows you to have the same rules and rights as gas, electricity, telecommunications and water supply companies.
We are not obliged to grant a Section 50 licence and there is a charge for it. The amount changes depending on a range of factors such as how many units of inspection the proposed work would create. The definition of a unit of inspection can be found at national code of practice for inspections GOV.UK: Street works coordination.
The total fee for excavations that are less than 200metres in length is £723.
There are also penalties for non-compliance, just as there are for gas, electricity, telecommunication and water supply companies.
When applying for a street works licence or letting us know of the works if you are a gas, electricity, telecommunication or water supply company, you must tell the Council what type of temporary traffic management you propose to use.
Stop and go boards
In many cases, 'Stop/Go' boards will be enough to control traffic.
Advanced consent from the Council for Stop/Go boards is not normally needed but we reserve the right to issue directions.
The Council can temporarily close roads, footways, footpaths and public rights of way under the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984 if:
Works are proposed to be carried out on or near the highway or public rights of way.
There is a potential danger to the public or serious damage to the highway or right of way.
It is needed for maintenance works undertaken on behalf of the council.
Section 14 (1): Allows for roads to be closed for 5 days and for 18 months (footways, footpaths and public right of ways 5 days and for 6 months). These requests must be submitted at least four to six weeks before the closure is required. If there is any doubt that work cannot be completed within five days, it is advisable that an order (valid for up to eighteen months) is the best choice.
If a longer closure is required past the 18 month period, then an application has to be made to the Secretary of State for the Environment for an extension. This application must be made in good time before the initial closure period has expired and there will be an additional charge.
Section 14 (2): Allows for emergency closures of up to 21 days (routes must be inaccessible or dangerous for the public to use for an emergency closure).
The cost for both a road, footway or footpath closure is £2797 (inc VAT).
The cost for an emergency closure (5 or 21 days) and TTRN (5 days) is £1374 (inc VAT).
Making an application for a road closure does not automatically guarantee that permission will be granted, your application will be assessed and one of our street works officers will contact you to advise if your proposals can be accommodated.
If your road closure application is to coincide with a Section 50 or Road Opening Notice, please ensure that you apply for these separately first, within the timescales provided.
Anyone carrying out work in the highway must leave the surface in good order.
Some defects are often obvious straight away and are quickly put right, but sometimes they take longer to become apparent (eg when a trench in the road sinks). If any faults in the highway are seen by a Council officer, they will be reported and they will arrange for them to be fixed.
Please remember to tell us exactly what you have seen and where you saw it (eg the house number it is outside of and the street name) so that we can easily find it. We will then investigate the problem and try to fix it as soon as possible.
Tacit consent does not apply to street works including proposed traffic management, associated arrangements and the works themselves. It is in the public interest that the Council should actively consider your application and grant consent before works starts (unless you are a gas, electricity, telecommunications or water supply company).