Manhole Covers

Devon County Council’s materials laboratory has been closely involved with the National Motorcycle Council (consisting of several influential motorcycle bodies) in providing back-up to the UK Government committee pressing for revision of the current European rules on the skid resistance of manhole covers.

We all know manhole covers are (a) all too often on bends or right on the riding line; (b) rotten slippery in the wet. There are still no effective requirements for skid resistance under the current British Standard.

The Government is seeking support at European level to include minimum skid resistance, to make manhole covers equivalent to decent quality road surface. They also hope for the use of an enhanced grip cover in critical areas, including on bends.

Anyone who has experienced hitting 40 year old polished cast iron on a Devon country lane while cranked over, will welcome such a simple and effective change. It remains to be seen if it ever gets off the “good intentions” list and into the rule book.

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