Thursday, 24 September 2020

Frustration at delay in reducing speed limit

Frustration at delay in reducing speed limit

PLANS to reduce the speed limit on the main roads through Crays Pond are no closer to fruition a year after being suggested.

Oxfordshire County Council, the highways authority, conducted speed surveys on the B4526 and B471 last summer with a view to reducing the limit from 40mph to 30mph.

Now highways officers have told Goring Heath Parish Council that they want to conduct more surveys before making a decision.

The surveys would probably be done once schools have gone back to ensure they reflect normal usage.

They would have to show drivers routinely going above 30mph but not 35mph.  If the average traffic speed is measured at above 35mph, 40mph is then regarded as a safe upper limit and anyone going faster should be dealt with by the police.

Peter Dragonetti, vice-chairman of the parish council, said the previous surveys showed drivers averaging 35mph so they shouldn’t need repeating.

He said a 30mph limit was normal for most built-up areas and Crays Pond should be no different even though there haven’t been fatal accidents there.

He said there had been many other crashes over the past 20 years, often at the crossroads.

Councillor Dragonetti said: “It seems someone has to be killed before anyone gets too excited about it, sadly.

“We emailed the county council’s chief executive and she apologised for the lack of information from officers but we’re not happy with the situation.

“It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to interpret the previous survey and we want them to get a move on because people have been flagging this up for years.”

Yvonne Rees, chief executive of the county council, replied: “The [traffic] team wish to repeat two surveys carried out last year to ensure the lengths of road chosen by the parish council are suitable for the speed limit reduction. 

“There is little point in establishing a lower limit, however desirable from an environmental or safety point of view, if it is not going to have any effect on actual vehicle speed.”

She said the parish council would be told when the surveys had been arranged and would be able to discuss the results and agree a way forward.

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