Foreword from Transport Scotland

We are all reliant, to some extent, on the services provided by the telecoms, electricity, gas and water industries. In order to maintain these services, road works are necessary to repair the many underground pipes and cables that supply these essential services.

It is crucial that we take all the steps we can to ensure that road works are done as safely as possible, to keep both our road workers safe, as well as the passing public. To minimise the impacts of necessary road works, to ensure they’re done safely and to protect the apparatus of these essential utilities, we need provide those operatives carrying out the work with as accurate information as we can. For this, we need to gather your views on current working practices in Scotland’s road works sector.

The Scottish Government is launching this consultation to gather evidence on your experience of using ‘apparatus plans’ to help ensure our resulting guidance that will refine the process for road authorities and utility firms supplying information to our ‘Vault’ system is fit for purpose. It must benefit our frontline road workers, the asset owners, the public and end service users. Additionally, we would also like to take this opportunity to gain a broader understanding of the current ‘Street Works Qualification’ regime.

We welcome responses from all organisations and persons who are involved in Scotland’s road works sector and we especially invite responses from those with experience of reading ‘apparatus plans’ for the purpose of road excavations. We would encourage you to share your views on this fundamental safety issue before the closing date of 3 October 2024.