How we maintain our roads and drains

Find out what we do to look after our roads and drains.


Every year we treat our roads to help them stay:

  • free of potholes
  • skid-proof 
  • water-proof

Most of the work we do is called surface dressing.

We spray the road with a hot, tar-like material called bitumen, cover it with stone chippings, and roll the road to make it flat. We do this each summer. 

We also treat some roads with micro asphalt , a cold bitumen material. 

Yearly resurfacing programme 

When we do this type of work, we completely remove the top surface of the road and put a new layer on. This often means we have to dig deep into the road.

When this work is done, the road is left smooth and easier to drive on.

These bigger jobs can cause traffic issues because we often need to close the road.

We make sure the road closures are safe for the workmen and people using the roads.

You can report a damaged road or footpath.

Drains and gullies  

We aim to clean every drain or gully in Bristol at least once a year.  

Our yearly work helps us to:

  • make sure we clear every drain in Bristol
  • get data on the condition and silt levels of individual gullies. 
  • target problem areas, so we don’t visit gullies that don’t need cleaning as often

We still respond to emergencies if there is an immediate danger to the public or a risk to property.