An annual summer programme to improve roads and stop potholes forming is now underway across Somerset.

Surface dressing works by coating an existing road with bitumen, covering it with stone chippings and then rolling it.

It’s an extremely effective way to seal a road, improve skid resistance and prevent water getting under the surface. This helps stop potholes forming and can prolong the life of a road by up to ten years.

Somerset County Council will this year be surface dressing 140 miles of road at 138 sites across the county.

Highbridge County Councillor John Woodman, who is Somerset County Council’s Cabinet Member for Highways, said: “Surface dressing is one of our best weapons in the ongoing fight against potholes.”

“The process is often misunderstood and dismissed as a cheap alternative to resurfacing. In fact that is a myth – they are very different processes, much like painting wooden windows to stop them rotting, rather than simply replacing them.”

We use surface dressing on roads which are in relatively good condition which is proven to ensure they last much longer before more costly and more disruptive resurfacing is required.”

Surface dressing teams are mobile and the work is weather dependent so cannot take place in wet or hot conditions. This means the rolling programme is highly flexible and dates can change at short notice.

You can check which roads are included as part of this year’s programme, check provisional dates and find out more about surface dressing at www.travelsomerset.co.uk/surface-dressing.