Many people get frustrated when there are road works causing delays and disruption to regular travel. What seems to annoy people the most is the general consensus that road work companies are under poor management and the people working for them simply aren’t doing their jobs. Unfortunately, this is true for some road work companies, but there are many other reasons that roadworks may take so long to complete;



Weather can play a huge role in how long it takes to complete road construction or repair. The moisture levels in the ground especially can affect many different aspects of it including;

  • The moisture of the base, dirt needs to be dry enough so that it can be compacted efficiently
  • The temperature of both the concrete and the tarmac


Lane Rental Rules

Contractors must rent lanes in order to carry out contraction, this is used as an incentive for them to work quicker. They must pay for every day that a lane is out of use. Due to this, it is more practical and the same price for contractors to occupy the entire length of the lane, rather than just the part they are working on, that’s why you often see long stretches of blocked off road with no work being done.


Equipment Breakdowns

The equipment used for tarmacking a road is very expensive, due to this it is rare for a company to have lots of backups of equipment. This mixed with the nature of the work – outdoors with temperamental weather and dust – and this can lead to a problem that is going to take a bit of time and a lot of money to fix.


Keeping Roads Open

During many road constructions or repair jobs, it is near impossible to close all lanes of a single road. This is because traffic still needs to pass through. This ultimately leads to the road work companies having less room to work and so it can take them longer to complete the tasks that they need to.


Labour and Procurement Issues

There are many laws put in place to ensure that employees are treated fairly. Road work companies need to pay employees more to work at night and they are also entitled to overtime after they’ve worked 8/40 hours. This doesn’t give road work companies a lot of time to get work done, especially if adverse weather conditions are affecting their ability to work during working hours. As major road work projects are funded by the government, there simply isn’t enough funds to employ people to work throughout all hours of the day to complete the work.


Complicated Process

Successfully constructing a road is more complicated than you might think, there are a lot of different elements to it including but not limited to;

  • Stabilised sub-base
  • Drainage systems
  • Base course
  • Reinforcing
  • Paving
  • Sawing joints
  • Curing shoulder
  • Striping
  • Guardrails

There are lots of different skills, equipment and members of staff required in order to get the job done.



The government ultimately own all the roads, so at the end of the day, what they say goes.


Wildlife Protection

Sometimes there is just no interfering with nature. If there is an endangered species is found near the construction site, then work will need to be postponed until the animals migration is made.


As you can see, there are many different ways that roadworks can be delayed and it’s not always the road work companies faults. If you have a personal roadwork project or a domestic or commercial project, then always ensure you hire a reputable professional and always read and sign a contract before any work begins and any money is handed over.