Bus routes - video transcript

[Caption] Soft landscapes - Bus routes

A member of our highways team talks though how we monitor overhanging vegetation on our highways.

Team member: "The problem we have on many roads across Kent with overhanging vegetation is with high sided vehicles, such as double decker buses, obviously taller than most vehicles using the road.

They can be up to 4.5 metres in height and the problem we have is the vegetation growing alongside and over the top of the the carriageway which forces  the vehicles over to the centre line of the road  to avoid the vegetation, and it's obviously a safety issue.

Unfortunately buses and high sided vehicles do strike vegetation sometimes and there's a there's a risk to passengers and pedestrians when there's fallen vegetation.

When we're surveying on the buses we use a dash camera, that's like a video camera, it's always running. We also use an iPad to take still images of vegetation that's causing an issue.

These are both GPS enabled so we can then quite easily match the images to Land Registry boundary when we get back to the office to determine the ownership.

Once we've determined ownership using the Land Registry, we will then send out a series of letters. With the first notification we send out, landowners have 28 days to either cut back the vegetation or arrange for the work to be done and get back to us with a date for works.

After the 28 day period, we reinspect the road. If there's no works complete or we haven't heard from any landowners, we can then serve notice on the landowner with what's called a section 154 and that's under the Highways Act of 1980. That's to remove the obstruction to clear the carriageway. It's a bit more of a formal letter.

If no works have been carried out after the notice period of 21 days then KCC can without any further contact arrange for the works to be carried out at KCC's initial cost, and then this is recharged back to the landowner at a later date and therefore you know we can make sure the highway is safe and still recover the costs."