Highways England recently worked with the SURVIVE group, a partnership between the National Police Chiefs' Council, the breakdown/recovery industry, Highways England and other service providers, to introduce ten ‘Overarching Rules’ for recovery operators providing roadside assistance and repair services. These have been welcomed by all SURVIVE members.
Highways England has also worked with REACT, the national training arm for tyre fitters across England, who regularly operate on the strategic road network.
Highways England would not expect or encourage a recovery operator to work in a live lane without the appropriate support from Highways England staff, a police officer or other appropriate traffic management. Highways England’s traffic officers are trained to protect all vulnerable road users and work to the principle that they only leave a scene once it is clear, or suitable control measures are in place.
In 2017 Highways England worked with the roadside recovery industry and the emergency services to consider four different recovery scenarios for smart motorways. These scenarios were tested live on a full-scale mock-up of an emergency area. As a result of this collaborative exercise, SURVIVE’s best practice guidelines were updated, covering communications and procedures for recovery on a smart motorway. An information film with supporting materials was also produced, and became a core part of an improved training package shared across the recovery industry.