About to email the council about stretch of road - advice needed

scrumpydave
Posts: 10
Joined: 24 Jul 2015, 1:31pm

About to email the council about stretch of road - advice needed

Postby scrumpydave » 9 Feb 2017, 11:28am

Hi all

A friend of mine is trying to pressure the council into installing a crossing on a stretch of road near us that lots of children have to cross on the way to school. I support the intention here but I feel it is a sticking plaster on a wider problem of speeding and dangerous driving in the area, which is residential and largely subject to 20mph limits.

Has anyone got any experience or advice of this sort of thing? I'm happy to support the idea, but I'm uneasy about putting all my weight behind one solution.

Thanks

Psamathe
Posts: 12247
Joined: 10 Jan 2014, 8:56pm

Re: About to email the council about stretch of road - advice needed

Postby Psamathe » 9 Feb 2017, 12:20pm

I've no experience of your situation but have had some dealings with Highways - and they are a waste of space who consider they can do no wrong (in my experience).

I imagine a lot must depend on your circumstances but were I to wish to pursue something like that in my situation I would 1st discuss it with the Parish Council (raise it at a Parish Council meeting). I would try and get my Ward Councillor to support any proposal (maybe even local MP). But, in another area I sometimes help somebody with, their Town Council would be a complete waste of time - so I think a lot must depend on your own situation.

But with my experience of my Highways there is no way they would pay any attention.

Speeding is a difficult one to address. Around me over the last few years we've had a lot of those signs that read your speed and flash at you if over the speed limit put up - most people seem to ignore them.

Ian

steady eddy
Posts: 672
Joined: 1 May 2008, 11:02am
Location: Norfolk

Re: About to email the council about stretch of road - advice needed

Postby steady eddy » 10 Feb 2017, 4:52pm

The speeding issue is a matter for police enforcement - If you are in a rural area you might be able to get your parish council to engage in a Community Speed watch programme using a speed gun to record speed and then with warning letters sent out to miscreants. They can prove an effective solution. Traffic calming, by the way of engineered solutions, is not always an available option.

Engage with your local councillors and try and get someone from highways to visit the site and or meet with you to discuss it. Approach them through the highways section website on your County or Unitary Council website - that's where you find the highways depts., not with the District Councils. They will have target times for responding to emails - If you don't get anything in a week, then try again with a copy of your email to your County or Unitary Councillor. Their names and contact details will also be online. Letters to the press and local radio are also an effective form of campaigning.

thirdcrank
Posts: 30840
Joined: 9 Jan 2007, 2:44pm

Re: About to email the council about stretch of road - advice needed

Postby thirdcrank » 10 Feb 2017, 5:31pm

A couple of points:

Highway authorities have a special defence against claims for damages in respect of injuries alleged to be caused by highway defects of which they were unaware. Their inspection regime may have quite long intervals. Reporting defects is therefore important and there's something to be said for reporting via a method which retains a public record which reduces the possibility of misunderstandings (or worse) over what was reported.

Here's the cycling UK system:-
http://www.fillthathole.org.uk/

Police enforcement priorities are the remit of your friendly local police and crime commissioner (PCC) That's the person to lobby and don't let them fob you off. Your own PCC may have their own website or be somewhere on your local police force's website or both.

atlas_shrugged
Posts: 486
Joined: 8 Nov 2016, 7:50pm

Re: About to email the council about stretch of road - advice needed

Postby atlas_shrugged » 12 Feb 2017, 11:53am

Would definitely agree with the advice so far.

The PCC absolutely must be contacted. It is their duty to interface with members of the public especially when it concerns the safety of the public. That said in my unfortunate experience the individual concerned may be completely useless and especially unsympathetic to cyclists. Take a bow the PCC of Cambridgeshire.

If the stretch of road has caused you to crash then record this with the police and get a reference number. Ditto with the responsible authority. To find this out you may need to spend a day listening to music-on-hold where you get bounced around city / county / district councils - again get a reference number.

Definitely agree with the pothole report system. However we need to extend this to include equally dangerous issues such as leaves on cycle paths that never get cleared (have just had an 18 mph rear wheel wipeout on a straight flat path), or posts / barriers that can not be seen at night, or defective road layouts resulting in a cyclists death. So I would suggest a reporting system that shows up 2 colours on a cycling map: Brown - this area is [inappropriate word removed] and the reasons why, Red - this area is dangerous and the reasons why.

MikeF
Posts: 3992
Joined: 11 Nov 2012, 9:24am
Location: On the borders of the four South East Counties

Re: About to email the council about stretch of road - advice needed

Postby MikeF » 12 Feb 2017, 9:08pm

Ask the relevant police/PCC if they are aware of the West Midlands Police "Operation close pass".
"It takes a genius to spot the obvious" - my old physics master

Flinders
Posts: 3022
Joined: 10 Mar 2009, 6:47pm

Re: About to email the council about stretch of road - advice needed

Postby Flinders » 12 Feb 2017, 11:10pm

We were told if we wanted a crossing we'd have to wait for some more deaths. We'd actually had two, but apparently not close enough together in time.
Sometimes I despair.

Psamathe
Posts: 12247
Joined: 10 Jan 2014, 8:56pm

Re: About to email the council about stretch of road - advice needed

Postby Psamathe » 13 Feb 2017, 10:10am

Flinders wrote:We were told if we wanted a crossing we'd have to wait for some more deaths. We'd actually had two, but apparently not close enough together in time.
Sometimes I despair.

I am sometimes quite shocked about how Highways seem to take no responsibility for dangerous roads. Fortunately no deaths in one example I'm thinking about but we have a road (in open countryside) with horrendous visibility on junctions at each end (way below spec. required by the "street manual" or whatever it is called) and planners have now just granted planning permission for a residential plot on the road (no pavements, single track, open countryside field becomes a residence) meaning far more traffic pulling into/out of the junctions with no real visibility of oncoming vehicles. It completely beggars belief - there seems to be no consideration of the risks they are creating (not only for the lucky family who now see the value of their field sky-rocket).

Ian