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‘Drivers risking death’

Thursday 7th June 2012 (Andrew Griffiths)
‘Drivers risking death’

MOTORISTS are ‘regularly taking their lives in their hands to cross the A38’, according to Burton’s MP.

Andrew Griffiths said he had been inundated with evidence from drivers saying they were putting themselves at risk by using gaps in the central reservation to cross the dual carriageway.

“I’ve been overwhelmed by the number of people who have contacted me expressing their concern about the gaps that they’ve used to cut across the A38,” the Tory said.

“This anecdotal evidence seems to indicate that people are taking their lives in their hands on a regular basis in order to cross that road.”

Mr Griffiths spoke after receiving a response from transport minister Mike Penning to his letter to the Government demanding a safety review of the A38 near Burton.

He made the call following the deaths of Derby sisters Parveen Kauser and Raheela Altaf in April in a horror crash on the northbound stretch near Branston junction.

The minister confirmed the width of the road met current safety guidelines and said that a decision would be taken on any action once a current review of the highway’s safety was completed.

Mr Griffiths said he had since tabled a parliamentary question asking when the review would report — a call brought into sharper focus following another accident on the A38 near Branston on Tuesday.

A motorist suffered minor injuries when a Renault ploughed into the central reservation at 5.45pm, spilling diesel onto the southbound carriageway and closing part of the road for two hours.

“It seems that every week that goes past there’s another accident on the A38,” said Mr Griffiths. “Every week is potentially another fatality.

“I’m encouraged the review is taking place but I’m just concerned it’s not happening quickly enough.

“I don’t think we can afford to hang about and wait while the bureaucratic wheels turn. We need an urgent solution.

“I don’t see why within a month or two we should not have some creative answers and some solutions to the problem.

“We need the minister to properly engage to ensure we get the measures in as quickly as possible.”

Mr Griffiths suggested that any safety measures would need to include closing the gaps in the central reservation and reducing drivers’ excessive speed, which he said appeared to be a factor ‘in every accident’.

Average speed cameras could be trialled and then installed if they proved effective, the MP said.

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