18th October 2021
Are Kerbs And Gutters The Same Thing?

Have you ever wondered whether to call the small strip of concrete at the edge of the road a kerb, or gutter? You definitely wouldn't be alone if you have, but thankfully, that's a bit of confusion that our amazing team here can help clear up for you.

Why Bother Putting Anything At The Edge Of The Road?
On some roads, particularly in rural areas, you're not likely to find either a kerb or a gutter along the edge of the road, instead finding what will generally be a dirt or gravel path put down to simply make it easier for cars to pass by, though it is also possible to find bitumen and asphalt roads with nothing adorning their sides.  

Without these structures at their side, though, these roads are going to have no way to manage the surface water that will inevitably collect upon them, and the road itself will be weaker without a kerb to help reinforce its structure. Ultimately, those are the two functions of the kerb and the gutter – to provide an outlet for any surface water that will have collected along the road, and to help reinforce the pavement alongside the road. With that said, those tasks aren't necessarily shared between the two structures.

Gutting The Flow Of Water
When water begins to collect on a road, it can quickly present a hazard to various road users. For smaller roads that aren't used often, this isn't a major concern, but for roads that a large amount of traffic depends on, it simply isn't acceptable to allow a light drizzle to render the path entirely unpassable. Fortunately, that problem can be fixed fairly easily with a good gutter, which is defined as simply being a prepared channel within a surface. Gutters in the road, then, are generally placed right at the edge, immediately adjacent to the kerb, and it is placed there with the intention of controlling the flow of water as best as possible.

Kerbing The Rising Tide
The kerb, then, plays an interesting role in that its primary purpose is to reinforce the road itself, though it can also play a dual role by also helping the gutter control the floor of water. Generally speaking, these two structures are built and placed before bitumen or asphalt is poured, allowing the civil contractors to help plan everything out correctly. By doing it in this order, civil contractors tend to create gutters that utilise the kerb as a secondary wall, allowing water to flow up and against it despite not formally being part of the gutter structure, as the gutter slides in along the joint between the road and the kerb. If you'd like to install either a kerb or a gutter alongside your road, you'll need the team best known for labour hire in the state, Abi Civil, to help you do it. To speak with our team of civil contractors in NSW about what we can do for you, call us on 1300 402 510.