A WATER company has been fined more than £13,000 for failing to notify the county council of roadworks it undertook in Woolmer Green.
Thames Water carried out a resurfacing programme in Mardlebury Road following reports of a hazardous sewer cover in the carriageway in November 2011.
The company temporarily resurfaced the area with a layer of bitumen – but did not formally notify Hertfordshire Highways of the start and end of the emergency works.
After failing to resolve the situation informally, Hertfordshire Highways issued fixed penalty notices for the offences.
When Thames Water failed to pay the penalties, Hertfordshire Highways prosecuted the company under the New Roads and Streetworks Act.
At Watford Magistrates Court, the company was fined a total of £13,338, including the council’s costs.
A Herts Highways spokesman said: “Thames Water attended the site and chose to carry out an interim reinstatement by temporarily resurfacing the defective area with a layer of bituminous material.
“They were required by the Act to give us formal notification of the start and finish of this emergency work – a simple electronic process.
“The company didn’t provide the formal notices, and after failing to resolve the situation informally, Hertfordshire Highways issued fixed penalty notices for the offences.
“As Thames Water didn’t pay the fixed penalty we decided to pursue the matter through the courts, as the failure to provide notices prevents the county council from carrying out its statutory network management and coordination duties.”
The spokesman added it is not the first time Thames Water has been in trouble with Hertfordshire Highways.
“Although this is the first time we have prosecuted Thames Water, we have issued 94 fixed penalty notices to the company in the last 12 months for similar offences,” he said.
A Thames Water spokesman said the company was appealing the decision, and that it would be “inappropriate” to comment further.