Sun, 17 Jun 2018
HAMPSHIRE Highways teams are trialling new robotic grass cutters as the annual grass-cutting programme gets underway.
Skanska’s business director at Hampshire Highways Matthew Riches said: “The robotic cutters use smart technology to easily navigate around obstacles and pre-set boundaries.
“This means they can be used in areas where traffic travels at higher speeds and where it would be more dangerous for our workers to operate, keeping them safer.”
Councillor Rob Humby said: “Grass cutting is an important part of our annual highways maintenance programme, as good visibility is vital for all those using the road to maintain clear lines of sight.
“We are always looking at how we can harness technology to improve what we do – whether it’s a more cost-effective, quicker, or more efficient way to carry out highways maintenance.
“In this case, using a robotic grass cutter means that less cones and other traffic management measures are needed on the roads, so disruption to traffic should be minimised.
“As I’m sure gardeners across Hampshire are well aware, the combination of warm and wet weather we’ve had recently has resulted in rapid growth.
“Hampshire Highways teams are out around the county ensuring that roadside verges are cut back to improve visibility and safety for everyone who uses the roads.”
Hampshire County Council manages around 5,500 miles of road and 2,000 miles of roadside verges.
Grass and foliage is cut once a year on rural roads with swathes cut back to one or two metres depending on location, and urban verges are cut more often.
Skanska was appointed by Hampshire County Council in August 2017 to deliver highways maintenance services in Hampshire for the next seven years.