Users of the Scottish Road Works Register (“SRWR”) have had access to apparatus information through the ‘Vault’ layer, since 2011. This information has been supplied on a voluntary basis, by Scotland’s roads authorities and utility firms, for the primary purpose of supporting safe digging. As a part of the SRWR, this information is shared between organisations freely, and there are no plans to commercialise or ‘sell on’ the information within Vault for profit.

The SRWR, was established in statute under the Transport (Scotland) Act 2005 and is ‘kept’ (owned) by the Scottish Road Works Commissioner. On 01 April 2024, it became a legal requirement for utilities and roads authorities to provide details of their above and below ground apparatus to the Commissioner, effectively turning the voluntary process mandatory. 

At that time, no new rules were put into place regarding what information should be submitted, in what format or how often. We are currently in the process of looking at what the rules around this should be. In order to make new rules or guidance on this topic, it is vital that we hear from those actually using these plans while working on Scotland’s roads, the people who would be most affected by changes in this area.

Through this consultation, we hope to gain a better understanding of the current practicalities of using apparatus information plans, the level of information that is needed, and your views on how plans generally could be improved. Although we will then use this information to improve the guidance and legislation around ‘Vault’ specifically, we are equally keen to hear from operatives and supervisors who do not use Vault, or who may be using paper-based systems.

We would like to specifically encourage anyone who uses these plans directly to respond, so that your experiences can inform the resulting guidance and legislation. As with all Scottish Government consultations you have the option for your response to be anonymous. If you choose to share views anonymously, you’ll not be identified.