Highlands & Islands Regional MSP and long time road safety campaigner David Stewart urges drivers of heavy plant and agricultural vehicles to clean up after using the area’s roads.
David Stewart said “ A constituent highlighted an issue to me regarding excess mud being left on the roads in the region. This is an ongoing and perhaps annual problem which is potentially very hazardous.
“Whilst I appreciate that farmers and contractors need to move their machines from field to field and site to site at this time of year, there is a lot of mud on some fields and on some sites and I am simply asking that any mess left on the road by vehicles is cleared away as soon as possible in the interests of road safety of other users.
This may seem a minor issue, but let me be clear, the consequences can be dire for drivers and motorcyclists, who can be caught unaware by mud on the road and potentially lose control of their vehicle.
David Stewart continued “Putting out warning signs is good practice, but does not entitle anyone to leave mud on the road for hours or even days. I raise this matter to prevent drivers of heavy plant and agricultural vehicles from being liable should there be an incident or collision caused as a result.
Ian Wilson Regional Manager, NFU Scotland said “With ploughing, sowing and other spring operations ongoing across Scotland, NFUS has issued a timely reminder to farmers on the need, where possible, to keep roads free from mud and muck for the safety of other road users.
During normal cultivating operations mud or muck may inevitably end up on the road. The vast majority of farmers are already aware of their legal requirement to try to avoid this where possible, and where unavoidable, proper signage and cleaning up as soon as is practically possible is necessary.
Section 95 of the Roads (Scotland) Act 1984
A person who, being in charge of a vehicle on a road, allows such quantity of mud, clay, farmyard manure, or other material (of whatever nature) from the vehicle, or from anything carried on the vehicle, to drop onto or be deposited on the road so as to create, or be likely to create, a danger or substantial inconvenience to road users and who fails to remove the material as soon as reasonably practicable commits an offence.