‘Is Hertfordshire Highways waiting for a fatality?’ – call for action on danger junction near Graveley
- Credit: Archant
Calls are being made for action to be taken at an accident blackspot before there is a fatality.
Changes were made to the layout of the junction of Graveley Road and North Road near Graveley in May 2012.
Work carried out included widening High Street to provide a left turn for vehicles turning into North Road; widening the North Road approach to provide two lanes at the Give Way sign, and a traffic island at the head of the right turn lane on the main route through the junction.
Since the new layout there have been numerous accidents, with at least two collisions in the past two weeks alone.
Drivers, as well as Graveley Parish Council, are calling for something to be done before someone is killed.
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“It’s the fact there is a filter lane that causes the problem,” said one motorist writing on the Comet website.
“Just have a normal left turn and you won’t have an issue.”
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Driver Andy Kalek said: “Having a Give Way on the southbound filter lane (from Graveley) giving priority to people turning into North Road coming from the A1(M) roundabout is counter to the normal priority and people who have not seen this junction before are frequently hesitant and confused.”
One road user said: “The junction is also unlit. Is Herts Highways waiting for a fatality before review of the junction’s configuration?”
Graveley Parish Council members discussed the issue at a meeting on Tuesday and decided to write to John Wood, chief executive of Herts County Council, as well as the police.
Parish council chairman Peter Bracey said: “We feel frustrated because we flagged up that we didn’t think this was the best option. We said there should be a roundabout and lighting.
“Herts Highways have said there is not a problem. If no one is seriously injured they don’t do anything. It has to be a serious injury, which seems madness.”
A safety audit was carried out by Herts Highways in September 2013. A spokesman for Herts Highways said: “A number of recommendations have been made to improve the operation of the junction, including cutting back vegetation; replacing signs and providing an additional Give Way sign; and amending the road markings.” The spokesman said the maintenance of the junction is currently the responsibility of the East and North Herts NHS Trust, which paid for the new layout as part of a condition for planning permission being granted for work at Lister Hospital. “We are currently awaiting a response from the Trust to these recommendations,” he said.
A spokesman for the East and North Herts NHS Trust said: “As part of the overall planning permission received by the Trust to redevelop the Lister Hospital site, a condition was improvement to this nearby road junction. The work was undertaken by the Trust’s contractors to a design approved by the Highways Agency.
“It is correct that the Highways Agency, following its safety audit, has requested some further alterations to the its original approved design for the junction and the Trust’s contractor will carry these out on receiving approval. Once this has happened, responsibility for maintaining the junction returns to the Highways Agency.”