Rural Road Maintenance

The following is an overview of how Council priorities roads for the allocation of funding for the delivery of maintenance works. The scope of work includes maintenance on bitumen and gravel roads, signage and other road furniture, bridges and other drainage structures. Further details are available in Council's Roads Asset Management Plan.

Road Hierarchy

The rural network is classified into the following categories:

  • Arterial Roads
  • Rural Collector Roads
  • Rural Access Roads
  • Unformed Roads

Inspections

Council adopts a systematic approach to management of road maintenance requirements, recording and prioritizing defects to enable programming, when the intervention level is reached.

Council collects defect reports from three sources:

  • Reports from the public through Customer Service;
  • Informal inspections; and
  • Formal inspections.

The industry standard for measuring the roughness of a road is called the international roughness index (IRI). It is a measure of the axle movements along the road. Refer to Council's Road Asset Management Plan for further details.

Defects

Defects are divided into three priority levels as below:

Priority 1: Safety Legislative

These activities cover defects which constitute a safety problem to the road user and for which, the intervention level is reached without significant warning as opposed to usability defects which occur over a long period of time and can be planned for repair in advance of serious failure.

Response time is generally within a 24-hour period.

Priority 2: Preventative

Regular inspections will determine the interim maintenance requirements [e.g. pothole / pavement / furniture repair] in accordance with approved defect intervention levels.

The objective of maintenance activities on gravel Minor Local access roads is to maintain them in a trafficable condition in the majority of weather conditions and within budgetary constraints.

Priority 3: Usability/ Appearance

Regular inspections will determine the interim maintenance requirements [e.g. pothole / pavement / furniture repair] in accordance with approved defect intervention levels.

The objective of maintenance activities on gravel Minor Local access roads is to maintain them in a trafficable condition in the majority of weather conditions and within budgetary constraints.

Operational Road Classification

This takes into account traffic volumes generated by large areas of population, commercial ventures, through traffic and/or tourist attractions etc. Select the tab below to view details of each classification type.

Operational Class 199:

Generally Arterial Roads

Routes carrying a main flow with many branches

Roads with a traffic count generally more than 150 vehicles/day and are generally bitumen sealed.

They are through roads which connect to significant destinations and carry a main flow with a significant number of feeder roads.
The running surface is generally 6.5 – 8.0 metres wide [including shoulders].

They should be formed and generally drained to meet Q2 to Q5 standard, however, significant rain events may cause temporary closure.

Operational Class 150:

Generally Major Collector Roads

Collects from local access roads to distribute to an arterial road.

Roads with a traffic count generally between 125 - 150 vehicles/day. Roads which can be either bitumen sealed or gravel or are a combination of both.

They are generally through roads which connect to significant destinations and collect from local access roads to distribute to an arterial road.

The running surface is generally 6.5 metres wide [including shoulders] for both sealed and unsealed roads. They should be formed and generally drained to meet Q1 standard, however, significant rain events may cause temporary closure.

Operational Class 125:

Generally Minor Collector Roads

Collects from a limited number of local access roads to distribute to an arterial or collector road​.

Roads with a traffic count generally between 100 - 125 vehicles/day. Roads which can be either bitumen sealed or gravel or are a combination of both.

They are generally through roads and collect from a limited number of Local Access roads to distribute to an Arterial or Major Collector road.

Total pavement width is generally 6 metres wide including bitumen seal as applicable. They should be formed and generally drained to meet Q1 standard, however, significant rain events may cause temporary closure.

Operational Class 100:

Generally Local Access Roads

Road to access properties where people actually reside or provides exclusively for one activity or function.

Roads with a traffic count generally between 75-100 vehicles/day. Roads which can be either bitumen sealed or gravel or are a combination of both.

They are mainly “no through” roads, providing access to properties where people reside, and may also provide exclusive access for one activity or function.

Total pavement width is generally 5.5 metres including bitumen seal as applicable. The pavement material may be either imported gravel or insitu material.

Maintenance activities on these roads are intended to keep them trafficable in the majority of weather conditions, however it is possible that water may cross the road in minor storm events and that the interval between treatments may be less than desired.

Operational Class 75:

Generally Minor Local Access Road

Road to access limited properties where people actually reside.

Roads with a traffic count generally between 30-75 vehicles/day. They are generally unsealed “no through” roads providing limited access to properties where people actually reside. They may also provide exclusively for one activity or function.

Total pavement width is generally 5 metres and may be made up of either imported gravel or insitu material. Maintenance activities on these roads are intended to keep them trafficable in the majority of weather conditions, however it is possible that water may cross the road in minor rain events and that the interval between treatments may be greater than 12 months.

Operational Class 30:

Generally Service Track

Provides access to properties and property related activities.

Roads with traffic count generally between 10-30 vehicles/day. Roads which are generally unformed and undrained and are made up of a combination of imported gravel and naturally occurring material. They provide access to one property.

The width of the running surface is generally 4 metres and maintenance activities on these roads are intended to keep them open to traffic, however it is probable that water may cross the road in minor rain events and that the interval between treatments may be greater than 18 months.

Operational Class 10:

Generally Track

Provides access to properties and/or recreational facilities

Roads with infrequent traffic use and less than 10 vehicles/day. Roads which are “no through” roads and are open to the public.
These roads are unformed and undrained and their make-up consists of naturally occurring material. They are generally unfenced.

Maintenance activities on these roads are intended to keep them open to suitable vehicles, however it is probable that water will cross the road in minor rain events and that the interval between treatments may be greater than 2 years.

Levels of Service

Below describes the work which Council aims to provide within the scope of the maintenance budget. Service provision may not always meet the service aim or it may be greater, dependent on the condition of the asset, unusual traffic use, weather patterns and/or natural disasters. Further details are available in the Roads Asset Management Plan.

The objective of maintenance activities on sealed Class 199 to 100 roads is to prolong the life of the pavement and running surface before re-construction becomes necessary. Reseals will be applied on a 12 year cycle [approximately]. Regular inspections will determine the interim maintenance requirements [e.g. pothole/pavement repair, furniture and slashing, etc] in accord with approved defect intervention levels.

The objective of maintenance activities on gravel Rural Arterial roads is to maintain them in a trafficable condition in all weather conditions and within budgetary constraints. Maintenance activities are scheduled in accordance with approved defect intervention levels.

Regular inspections will determine the interim maintenance requirements [e.g. pothole / pavement / furniture repair] in accordance with approved defect intervention levels. The objective of maintenance activities on gravel Minor Local access roads is to maintain them in a trafficable condition in the majority of weather conditions and within budgetary constraints.

Regular inspections will determine the interim maintenance requirements [e.g. pothole / pavement / furniture repair] in accord with approved defect intervention.

Annual inspections will determine the maintenance requirements. The objective of maintenance activities on Unformed Tracks is to keep them open to suitable traffic when maintenance equipment is in the area. The extent of work undertaken is to repair washouts and remove obstacles as appropriate.