Highways repairs timescales

Problems on the roads

If you have reported a highway problem (like a pothole or broken manhole cover) we will investigate the matter as soon as possible and decide what action we will take. When we investigate, we will establish if the problem is hazardous to road users or not.

Sometimes our definition of hazardous may be different to yours. Please see our prioritisation policy (PDF) which explains how we decide which problems need repair and when.

If the problem is hazardous (but not an emergency), we will fix it in 7 days or 28 days depending on the severity and location.

If the problem is not hazardous, we will take one of the following courses of action:

  • We may record and monitor the problem, adding it to our programme of regular safety inspections
  • If we identify that there is an underlying problem, or wider issue, it will need to be planned out as a bigger piece of work. For example, if the whole road surface needs replacing we will add this to one of our major maintenance programmes. Please note that if this is the case, it is often difficult to give a timescale due to the complexities involved in prioritising, designing and implementing large scale highways works.
  • Depending on the problem, if there is a dedicated budget available we may add the problem to our planned programme of works, in which case it may take up to six calendar months to be completed by our teams.


The reporting web pages are not designed for emergency situations and you should call our contact centre immediately if you feel it is an emergency. We will attend any emergencies and make the area safe within 2 hours. If we are able to, we will fix the problem straight away. If we are unable to fix it straight away, we will come back and carry out a permanent repair within 28 days.

Private or third party issues

Sometimes we will inspect a reported highway problem, and find that the issue is being caused by a third party such as a private landowner (for example an overgrown hedge from a residential property) or a utility company (for example a sewage cover in the road).

If this is the case, we will contact the third party and ask them to correct the problem as soon as possible.

We would usually expect a private landowner to correct the problem within one month, however utility companies are likely to prioritise work depending on the severity and it could typically take up to three months to be resolved.

Subscribe to our newsletters for latest news and events.