Broadband firm fined over roadwork offences

Broadband provider Truespeed has been hit with fines and charges totalling more than £34k after pleading guilty to five offences in Somerset.

Somerset Council prosecuted the firm following works carried out in Frome and Street.

Truespeed admitted failing to install proper traffic management and guarding broken and excavated road surfaces to ensure the safety of pedestrians on a number of occasions, in breach of the New Roads and Street Works Act 1991.

The case was heard in Taunton Magistrates Court last month.

Truespeed Communications Ltd pleaded guilty to five charges in contravention of S65 of the NRSWA 1991, as follows:

  • On 25 July 2023 Truespeed carried out street works at Beaconsfield Way in Frome, and failed to install traffic management to ensure the safety of pedestrians, particularly those with disabilities and the travelling public affected by the works.
  • 2-3 inclusive: Truespeed admitted the same offences on the same day both in Poplar Close and Grange Road in Frome. As well as failing to install traffic management the court heard that it failed to adequately guard and light parts of the street that were broken up and excavated.
  • 4-5 inclusive: Again on 25 July, in Mildred Road and Hempitts Road in Street, the court heard Truespeed did not adequately guard and light parts of the street that were broken up and excavated, or install traffic management.

In passing sentence, the court gave full credit to Truespeed for guilty pleas entered at the earliest opportunity and accepted in mitigation that the company showed genuine remorse and took steps to remedy the breaches and ensure compliance with NSRWA 1991 in the future.  The aggravating factors were that Truespeed had previous convictions under NRSWA 1991 dating back to 2021.

Richard Wilkins, Somerset Council’s Lead Member for Transport and Digital said: “We take these sorts of offences very seriously, carrying out works without proper measures is simply unacceptable. We will take action if companies are in breach of their duties.

“Our message to the public is please report issues to Somerset Council if you see them – help us to make sure companies work in a safe and considerate manner.”

The court imposed fines totalling £28,000, costs of £4,277 and a victim surcharge of £2,000.