Workmen repainting white lines on a busy Cambridgeshire road drew the line at removing a dead fox – and instead, stopped short of the fox and carried on yards down the road.
It boiled down to who is responsible dead animals from the side of the road – and in this instance it was not the job of the county council, who commissioned and paid for the white lining, but of the district council.
It was only when CambsNews reported it to the county council did Huntingdonshire District Council – responsible for the part of Huntingdonshire where the dead fox was spotted on Tuesday – respond.
“Thanks for your email,” said a Huntingdonshire District Council spokesperson.
“We will try to remove this before the end of the week if we can safely do so.”
Meanwhile Cambridgeshire County Council re-iterated that ‘rules are rules’.
Their spokesperson confirmed that lining work being carried out on the B1043 at Paxton Hill near St Neots where the dead fox remains were spotted “isn’t complete yet”.
The spokesperson said: “We’re aware of the dead fox in the road and this has been reported to Huntingdonshire District Council so it can be dealt with and removed appropriately. We will then return to the road and complete the lining.”
Questioned about white paint marks further along the road, the spokesperson said that “unfortunately, during the lining work, someone drove through before the paint had cured.
“We still have the hatchings to complete so we’ll clear those at the same time.”
Huntingdonshire District Council on their website explains that in normal circumstances the removal and disposal of dead animals is the responsibility of the landowner.
“We will remove dead animals from council-owned land and the side of the road,” says their guidance.
“We can only remove dead animals in the road if it is not busy as we cannot close the road for access.
“We will remove cats, dogs, ducks (unless in water), muntjac deer, badgers, and foxes. “We cannot remove hedgehogs or sheep.”
Their guidance adds: “Where possible we will arrange for cats and dogs to be scanned for microchips and contact owners. Cats and dogs with no collar or microchip will be sent to Vetspeed for disposal.
“Please report dead swans or any other animal floating in or on the river to the Environment Agency’s incident helpline – 0800 807060.”
The B1043 where workmen were ‘outfoxed’ as they attempted to paint white lines. PHOTO: CambsNews reader
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