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Highways Agency: Contracting for Highways Maintenance

“The latest form of Highways Agency contracts for maintaining motorways and trunk roads provide visibility of costs and the ability to allocate risk appropriately. But, as is so often the case, a lack of probing analysis of the information which is available, and continuing gaps in some areas undermine the drive to maximize value for money. The Agency has not yet established and benchmarked the unit costs of planned maintenance tasks, such as resurfacing; and it does not have enough of the information on or analysis of the continuing condition of assets necessary to drive down whole life costs of planned maintenance projects. The Highways Agency also now needs to strengthen the engineering and commercial management skills of its area teams.”

 

Published:
16 Oct 2009

The Department for Transport: The failure of Metronet

“The Metronet PPP contracts to upgrade the Tube left the DfT without effective means of protecting the taxpayer. Metronet’s failure led to a direct loss to the taxpayer of between £170 million and £410 million. The DfT’s work with the Mayor of London, TfL and London Underground on a long term solution will need to improve governance and risk management in the new arrangements they are intending to put in place to protect the taxpayer.”

Published:
5 Jun 2009

Department for Transport: Improving road safety for pedestrians and cyclists in Great Britain

“Making roads safer for pedestrians and cyclists is a key element in encouraging people to walk and cycle more. While their safety has improved generally, some are more vulnerable, such as child pedestrians from deprived areas. The Department for Transport needs to draw on its research programme and the lessons learned from the projects that it funds to find ways of improving safety, especially for groups most at risk.”

Published:
8 May 2009

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency’s Response to growth in the UK Merchant Fleet

“The Maritime and Coastguard Agency coped with the recent sharp increase in the size of the UK-flagged merchant fleet by using its staff more efficiently and by delegating more of its survey work. But with fewer surveyors, the Agency is now struggling to inspect the increased fleet, which could put at risk the quality advantage of the UK flag. Better recruitment and succession planning will be needed, along with more strategic delegation to the classification societies.”

Published:
11 Feb 2009

The Department for Transport – Letting Rail Franchises 2005-2007

“Taxpayers and passengers should benefit from changes made to the franchising process for passenger rail services. The Department for Transport has contracted to save the taxpayer money while improving service quality, but it will need to see that capacity increases are well-managed and timely if passengers are to expect less crowded and more reliable journeys.”

Published:
15 Oct 2008

Shared services in the Department for Transport and its agencies

“It is disappointing to see a programme which aimed to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of a department leaving it on current projections some £80 million worse off. Departments need to be realistic about the challenges of implementing shared services and to manage suppliers effectively. Over the past year the Department has made efforts to improve the performance of the Shared Services Programme and it cannot afford to fail.”

Published:
23 May 2008

The Procurement of the National Roads Telecommunications Services

“The Highways Agency’s procurement identified the risks to the National Roads Telecommunications Services project and successfully transferred them to the private sector, conducting negotiations with the preferred bidder well. It did however take a lot longer than planned and only two bidders remained through to the end of the competition. There are good practice lessons both for the Agency and for other major public procurements”

Published:
4 Apr 2008

Reducing passenger rail delays by better management of incidents

“In addition to frustrating passengers, train delays cost the economy over £1 billion year. The rail industry has made progress in keeping trains moving, despite the rise in traffic on the network but, when incidents happen, passengers should get better information about what is happening. All sections of the rail industry need to improve their incident planning to keep trains moving quickly and safely.”

Published:
14 Mar 2008

Performance Brief: A summary of National Audit Office Reports of the Department for Transport 2007-08

This briefing paper for the Select Committee provides an overview of the work of the National Audit Office relevant to the performance of the Department for Transport in the financial year 2007-08 and subsequent months. It takes as its basis the targets and objectives of the Department and the work of the National Audit Office (NAO) in reviewing areas relevant to those targets and objectives.

Published:
18 Jan 2008