The notoriously poor Hertfordshire County Council (HCC) Highways Fault Reporting System has failed yet again. The system was unavailable for at least part of the weekend and all day Monday 3 December, and overnight to 4 December, meaning that a whole range of highways faults, from street lights out to pot holes needing repair, cannot be reported.

Chells county councillor and Manor borough councillor, Robin Parker reports: “As usual, I had some street lighting faults to report, some as a result of my Street Meet on Saturday morning at Mobbsbury Shops. The system allowed me to spend a long time entering the details and then refused to send the report and quoted an error. This happened several times.”

“I queried the situation with HCC’s Customer Service Centre (which is based in Stevenage) by telephone and the operator informed me that he had been unable to report any highways faults all day for the same reason. This means that hundreds of faults on the highway from all round the county, some of them potentially dangerous, cannot be reported either electronically or by telephone (since the latter requires he operator to be able to access the electronic system).”

“I have raised many system faults and also failures in design of the system many times since the new system started on 6.2.2012, including raising the issues at full county council meetings and in many meetings with officials – but, despite promises, the system is still not fit for purpose.”

“The system was not properly tested prior to going live. It cost thousands of pounds of council taxpayers’ money and it is an absolute disgrace. What is the majority Conservative group actually going to do about it? – they acknowledge the problems but after 11 months there has been little improvement.”