Wet weather always makes work on a construction site far trickier, even simple operations like digging trenches for the electrical supply to the lighting columns become harder and take longer.
On the southern half of the scheme the ground is mostly clay – when it gets wet it tends to stick to the buckets of the excavators and if the excavated soil gets wet it doesn’t compact very well when it is placed back in the trench.
The rain since Christmas has made the clay in the verges very soft and sticky which then gets carried onto the road surface, and makes regular scrapping and cleaning of the surface necessary to minimise the build up of mud on the carriageway.
To minimise the risk of the finished surface being damaged, the final top layer of the road surfacing is left until as much of the work as possible is complete.
Before laying the top layer of surfacing, the road needs to be thoroughly cleaned to ensure that it bonds well to the lower layers.
Once a section of the project is prepared for surfacing it has to be closed to site traffic to ensure it remains clean, this creates logistical problems in moving plant and materials around site.