A number of roadwork’s programmes have been approved by Donegal County Council and are currently underway for our roads network but how does the council decide which roads need maintained?
Vincent Callaghan Roads Services Supervisor for Donegal County Council gives us an overview of the process and describes the practice as nothing short of a team effort.
“My duties as roads supervisor are to gather information on the roads that are giving us the most difficulty in consultation with the engineer area manager and then write up a priority list of roads that take precedent. For this we factor in many things such as how many houses are on the road, the condition of the road and the traffic volume.”
“Not a lot of people know that our elected members then look over this list and agree on a programme of work, so essentially they get the final say and decide on which roads will be repaired,” Vincent explains.
The roadwork’s programme is broken into three categories maintenance, restoration and surface dressing; Vincent talks about how some of his allocated budget will be spent this year.
“This year my budget allocation is €500,000 for regional and national roads . On top of this I have €120,000 which will will go towards regional & local roads surface dressing.€35,000 will go towards surface dressing for N56. €30,000 for footpath repairs in towns & villages. Local road maintenance we will be spending €140,000. Regional road maintenance €60,000 and national secondary €30,000.
Talking about the controversial subject of potholes Vincent explains how the public can report the dreaded pothole.
“The first thing people can do if they discover a pothole is ring the Contact centre and report it through a staff member or alternatively people can go online to our website and report it there, we have a lot of avenues to do this and me and my team members take it seriously as our number one priority is the roads network in Donegal.”
Talking about the best and most challenging parts of his job Vincent says that achieving a high standard and not being able to maintain every road make it to the top of the list.
“I always try to achieve a high standard of work and in return I get a lot of satisfaction with the work I’m doing and of course getting work done within budget is always a bonus.”
“I also love working in the local community helping any way I possibly can it gives me great job satisfaction.”
“The biggest challenge for me and I think for a lot of my team members is not being able to do as many roads as we would like to. Meeting deadlines can also be quite challenging as a lot of people are counting on the roads we are working on to be completed with minimal disruption.”
Vincent says that the short term pain of roadwork’swill lead to long term gains when they are complete, asking road users to slow down and be patient when works are ongoing.
“The message we want to get across to people when work is ongoing is to be more alert when they see that there is roadwork’s. Our main concern is for the safety of the public and our workers as speed is a big problem; people need to slow down as they don’t see the road work signs, and of course to be patience, I know sometimes that’s easier said than done,” laughed Vincent.
- There is approximately €4million spent on the roadwork’s programme in Donegal electoral are alone.
- There is over 6000km of road network in County Donegal – that’s the same distance from Donegal to New York City – that’s a lot of road.
- For more info visit www.donegalcoco.ie