Highways teams are continuing to deliver essential safety repairs on Devon’s roads in order to maintain the local network for key workers.

Devon County Council has temporarily suspended planned maintenance work in order to focus on the repair of critical infrastructure.

Highway maintenance workers have been classified by the Government as key to delivering essential service during the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic as they play a critical role in keeping roads safe for emergency services and other key workers, as well as the delivery of food and supplies.

Devon Highways is asking for understanding from the public while it focuses on safety critical work, such as pothole repairs, drain repairs and clearance, safety inspections, winter gritting and removing unsafe trees.

Local communities are being asked not to approach highways workers carrying out repairs and inspections across the county.

With partial lockdown and social distancing in force across the UK, a number of incidents have been reported recently elsewhere in Britain where members of the public have threatened or intimidated highways crews delivering essential road maintenance, putting themselves and road workers at risk.

Councillor Stuart Hughes, Devon County Council Cabinet Member for Highway Management, said: “We hope that local communities understand that our highways teams are carrying out safety critical work to ensure that NHS staff, care workers, emergency services and essential deliveries can safely get to where they need to go.

“Highways staff are being advised to observe social distancing precautions and I would call on our local communities to do likewise and not approach our maintenance crews. They should be applauded for their vital work in keeping our roads safe for everyone during these uncertain times.”