Highway Maintenance

Enforcement and Prosecution

1. Enforcement Generally

Hampshire County Council has adopted the Enforcement Concordat agreed between a range of national bodies including the Local Government Association and the Cabinet Office.

The principles of good enforcement are:

  1. the setting of standards

  2. openness

  3. helpfulness

  4. proportionality

  5. consistency

  6. the provision of a system of complaints against the service

2. Our Services

The Highways and Transport Branch enforces the law in relation to use of public highways under the Highways Act 1980, the New Roads and Streetworks Act 1991, The Traffic Management Act 2004 and other applicable legislation.

We hold regular meetings with utilities companies who carry out the vast majority of works on the highway and skip-hire companies.

We provide relevant information for inclusion in Parish Council newsletters.

We will occasionally publicise changes in the law, where the need to be widely known about.

Our other policies detail the County Council’s powers for enforcement in relation to the particular subjects they cover.

3. Action we take if the law is breached

If we find a breach of the law, in most cases we try and resolve the matter without recourse to formal action by reporting the breach to the person responsible and requesting that they take remedial action.

However in more serious cases we can take a variety of actions, including:

  • the service of notices requiring remedial action and taking relevant action should the notice fail to be complied with

  • verbal or written warning

  • formal caution

  • prosecution

Before any legal action is taken there will be an opportunity to discuss the case, where this is appropriate.

4. Taking legal action

In deciding which action to take, a number of factors will be taken into consideration including:

  • the seriousness of any alleged offence and the impact on the highway network

  • the affect of the alleged offence on the public safety and the environment

  • the previous history of the offender

  • action taken to prevent any recurrence

  • any explanation offered and the circumstances and attitude of the offender

  • what course of action will best serve the public interest

Prosecution is the last resort and only taken in cases that involve repeated or serious offences relating to safety, accessibility and preservation of the highway network.

The decision to prosecute is taken:

  • in accordance with the Code for Crown Prosecutors

  • without any unnecessary delay

  • and in accordance with statutory requirements

Version No:   1.0

Effective from:   14/10/2010

If copied or printed, this document should be treated as uncontrolled and correct only at the date it was copied or printed.