To receive and answer any questions from Surrey County Council electors within the area in accordance with Standing Order 66.
Mr Graham Mitson, a local resident, had submitted a written question about noise and vibration impacts on homes along the A320 Guildford Road at Ottershaw, and a written response was provided to him in advance and read out at the meeting.
Mr Mitson was unable to attend the meeting so there was no supplementary.
Q. Written question from Mr Graham Mitson of Ottershaw
My property is one of several bungalows and houses that are situated very close to the Woking bound carriageway of the Guildford Road.One of our main concerns is the excessive noise and vibration from road traffic 24/7 and so it comes as no surprise to see that the daytime noise level is 70-75dB(A) and night time 65-70dB(A) (DEFRA Noise Mapping England).
Noise from road, rail, and air traffic is regulated under the Enviromental Noise Directive (END) which is implemented in England through the Enviromental Noise (England) Regulations 2006.The END requires the exposure to transport noise to be determined through noise mapping and the adoption of action plans based upon noise mapping results. These are designed to manage noise issues and effects, including noise reduction if necessary.
The Noise Action Plan: Roads (Including Major Roads) Regulations 2006 as amended January 2014 gives information on the detrimental effect of noise on communities and suggests ways that road traffic noise may be reduced.
The document states that for any particular location there is a wide range of measures that can be implemented to provide improved management of the road traffic noise and/or noise reduction. Some of the possible measures include the use of low noise road surfaces and the introduction of speed restrictions.
With regard to the equally serious problem of vibration, which has been reported by several residents, I have a letter from SCC Local Highway Services which states:
‘Following a full structural assessment in 2012 of the A320 Ottershaw section four critical failures were identified – 1. Carriageway Movement – underlying structural movement was resulting in constant reactive repairs’
Would you please inform me what action plan Surrey County Council has to reduce the noise and vibration affecting our properties?
A. Response from Chairman on behalf of the Committee:
Guildford Road is a strategic A-class road and one of the main approach routes to Junction 11 of the M25. Typical of a road of this nature, it carries substantial volumes of traffic (average daily flows are about 25,000 vehicles) including a significant number of large vehicles. Inevitably properties situated close to such a road will suffer from a commensurate level of traffic noise and there is also the potential for associated vibrations.
A series of vehicle activated signs have previously been installed along the A320 including a pair of signs (one for each direction of travel) relatively close to your property. These signs are intended to help reduce vehicle speeds (which in turn may have some impact on traffic noise levels) and traffic surveys indicate a relatively good level of compliance with the speed limit at the location.
At present, there are no immediate proposals to introduce additional measures along Guildford Road that might reduce noise and vibration. However, there is a longer term proposal to resurface Guildford Road. These works are yet to be programmed and will take place after Affinity Water have completed works to replace/refurbish water mains along Guildford Road. This work will take place in phases and the first phase is due to commence early in 2016 and take approximately 8 to 9 months to complete. Further investigations will be required before Affinity Water can confirm the duration of the following phases of work.
The specification for the resurfacing has yet to be agreed and this will be determined based on an assessment of the condition of the carriageway surface and the nature of the road. The installation of a new road surface will potentially help reduce existing levels of noise and vibration.