NATIONAL HIGHWAYS SECTOR SCHEMES (NHSS)
National Highways Sector Schemes (NHSS) are bespoke quality management systems for organisations working on the UK road network. They are based on the ISO 9001 standard, but do not duplicate them.
There are currently more than 20 individual schemes. They cover activities ranging from fencing, landscaping and vehicle safety restraints to road surfacing and marking, and traffic management.
If your company supplies services to Highways England under the Specification for Highways Works (SHW), you must be certified under all the relevant schemes for the work you are carrying out.
The schemes aim to make sure that work is carried out to the highest standards of professionalism, using properly trained staff. They also place a strong emphasis on health and safety.
WHO NEEDS TO BE CERTIFIED?
NHSS are quality management schemes for organisations working on the UK’s road network. They are based on the ISO 9001 framework, but interpret it specifically to highways maintenance activities.
NHSS includes more than 20 individual schemes. Each scheme is developed and managed by technical advisory committees. The membership of each committee is made up of industry representatives and other interested parties, such as local authorities, trade associations and certification bodies.
Individual NHSS schemes come under four main categories:
- road surfacing and marking
- fencing, landscaping and vehicle safety restraints
- traffic management
- lighting, electronics and corrosion protection
A list of current schemes can be found on the Schedule of Suppliers website. This is updated when new schemes are added or scheme titles changed.
You can view a list NHSS documents here
Each scheme has a set of Sector Scheme Documents (SSDs). These describe the minimum standards you will need to meet before you can be certified under that scheme, including:
- detailed training and competency requirements
- quality plan requirements
|2A||Design and/or Supply, Installation and Repair of Fences for Infrastructure Works|
|2B and 5B||Vehicle Restraint Systems|
|2C||Environmental Barriers (Structural) for Infrastructure Works|
|3||Stocking and Distribution activities for Mechanical Fasteners|
|3B||Stocking and Distribution Activities for Structural Steel Products|
|4||Preservative Treatment and Supply of Treated Timber|
|5A||Manufacture of Parapets for Road Restraint Systems|
|7||Application of Road Making Materials & Road Studs to Paved Surfaces|
|8||The Overseeing and / or Installation and / or Maintenance of Highway Electrical Equipment and Supporting Works|
|9A||The Design, and/or Manufacture and/or Assembly and/or Provision of Permanent Road Traffic Signs|
|10A||The Manufacture of Metallic Legacy Vehicle Restraint Systems|
|10B||Permanent Vehicle Restraint Systems Incorporating NHSS2B & NHSS5B|
|12A/12B||Static Temporary Traffic Management on Motorways and High Speed Dual Carriageways, Including On-Line Widening Schemes|
|12C||Mobile Lane Closure Traffic Management on Motorways and Other Dual Carriageways|
|12D||Installing, Maintaining and Removing Temporary Traffic Management on rural and urban roads|
|13||Supply and Application of Surface Treatments to Road Surfaces|
|16||Quality Management of the Laying of Asphalt Mixes|
|17/17B||Vehicle Recovery at Highway Construction Sites (NHSS 17) and Vehicle Recovery and Removal on Control Roads including storage (NHSS 17B)|
|18||Natural Environment and Landscape Including Ecology for Infrastructure|
|19A||Corrosion Protection of Ferrous Materials by Industrial Coatings|
|20||Execution of Steelwork in Transportation Infrastructure Assets|
|22||Management, Operation, Installation and Maintenance of Road Tunnels|
|23||Small Scale Pavement Repairs|
|29A||Land Drilling – Geothermal Drilling|
|30||Installation, Maintenance and Repair of Modular Paving|
|GD02/16||Highway Design Activities|
Certification of suppliers is carried out by certification bodies, which in turn are accredited by the UKAS. Each body carries out certification activities for at least one individual NHSS scheme.
If your business supplies services covered by NHSS to Highways England, you must be registered under all the relevant schemes for that work.
This is a mandatory requirement under the SHW, unless the contract documents state otherwise.
If your business subcontracts the work, you do not have to be registered but any subcontractors you use must be. The SHW does not allow subcontractors to provide services under the umbrella of another registered supplier.
NHSS will be relevant to your business if it includes any of the following:
- main contractors and subcontractors who work on the motorway or trunk road network
- contractors or subcontractors that work on or beside roads, including those involved in landscaping work
- manufacturers, installers and repairers of products covered by a scheme
- highway designers and consultants
The schemes may also be relevant if your business is involved in the development of industrial, commercial, or private land or property, or carries out work on railways or inland waterways – especially if this is near a road, or adjacent to one.
HOW CAN ERYRI CONSULTING LIMITED HELP?
Eryri Consulting Limited are a professional ISO consultancy company based in North Wales. Our team are dedicated to supporting you and your business, no matter your size. We can help your organisation get certified and registered under the NHSS, which could be included with your ISO Audit.
If you have an existing ISO 9001:2015 Certification, we can integrate the requirements of the specific NHSS into your management system.
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