FARMERS and drivers of construction vehicles are being urged to think responsibly about keeping the roads clear of mud.

North Yorkshire County Council (NYCC) has received reports of muddy roads and is reminding those who deposit the mud that they are potentially liable for a range of offences.

The police and the highways have a number of powers, mainly under the Highways Act 1980 and the Road Traffic Act 1988. Farmers or construction vehicle operators must:

  • Keep to their own farm roads whenever possible;
  • Keep to low speeds and prevent mud from being deposited by removing any excess before driving on to roads;
  • Be prepared to hire equipment to promptly remove deposits;
  • Use authorised signs prominently positioned for road users to see;
  • Clean the road as necessary during the working day and always at the end;
  • Ensure that equipment and labour is available and is suitable for the soil and weather conditions;
  • When using a contractor, ensure agreement is reached beforehand on who is responsible for mud on the road and that suitable public liability insurance is in place.

County Cllr Don Mackenzie, NYCC's executive member for highways, said: “Every year we face problems with mud and other debris deposited on our roads. We recognise that most farmers and operators of construction vehicles act responsibly, but unfortunately there are some that break the law. As the highways authority, the county council has a duty to ensure the roads are in a safe condition for all drivers.

To report mud on the road, go to