Spray 2

Spray technique is filling potholes fast on rural roads

People should experience smoother journeys on Lancashire's rural roads after a summer of major investment in an innovative technique which rapidly repairs potholes using a high-pressure spray.

Lancashire County Council has put £1m into spray injection patching, a method which can achieve up to 200 repairs a day per machine.

The council has doubled its budget for this repair technique compared with last year, and four of the patching machines are currently at work throughout the county.

Spray injection patching is particularly suited to improving Lancashire's 700 miles of rural roads, as the speed of each repair means that the machines can cover a lot of ground.

The spray injection machines are being used in a preventative way to 'find and fix' on roads where most potholes are being reported, while also sealing smaller defects as they move along, helping to prevent more potholes appearing in future.

They work using a multi-functional hose which initially blasts compressed air to remove all dust, debris and water from the affected area. Once the defect has been cleaned, a cold bitumen emulsion is applied to seal it. An aggregate mix is then fired in at high speed, along with another coating of bitumen emulsion to form a high-quality repair.

County Councillor Rupert Swarbrick, cabinet member for highways and transport, said: "We're investing around £35m in our highways this year, and have doubled the budget for spray injection patching to bring our rural roads into better condition.

"We have a very extensive rural network in Lancashire and this method is a really efficient and cost-effective way of getting on top of the repairs which are needed, which we simply couldn't do within the same time and budget using traditional techniques.

"The cold and wet Lancashire winters means that it's always a challenge to keep our roads in good condition, however all the maintenance we're carrying out at the moment will make a real difference by the end of the summer."

It is estimated that last year over 18,500 spray injection repairs were made on Lancashire's roads, based on the volume of surfacing material used.

Notes to editors

Main photo shows work taking place in Lancashire this summer. Group photo of 4 shows Cllr Swarbrick 3rd from left with staff from Lancashire County Council highways and Velocity UK Ltd. Please get in touch if you would like the video as a file to embed on your website.