Care must be taken in poor conditions

DRIVERS returning to work after the long Christmas and New Year break were confronted by hazardous driving conditions as snow and sleet combined with icy surfaces to make journeys treacherous.

DRIVERS returning to work after the long Christmas and New Year break were confronted by hazardous driving conditions as snow and sleet combined with icy surfaces to make journeys treacherous.

Suffolk county council is responsible for thousands of miles of roads, and it is no real surprise that transport managers admit that it is impossible to grit every road by the start of the rush-hour.

But there does need to be a careful look at how the gritters operate to ensure that all the major routes are kept clear 24 hours a day - we don't get alpine-like snow conditions in Suffolk and it should not be beyond the authorities to keep the roads moving.

However drivers also have their part to play when bad weather strikes - it was incredible that car and van drivers were travelling at speeds of up to 80mph along the A14 this morning.


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Driving behaviour has to be modified to ensure that the roads remain as safe as possible. Driving on the A14 in a snow or sleet shower requires different skills to driving on it during a fine summer's day.

Motorists have to be prepared to drive slower and allow longer for their journeys. It is better to be late for a meeting than end up a late driver!

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Today's weather is unusual - it is the kind of conditions we only see a handful of times every year in this country - but it is not exceptional.

Both the authorities and individual drivers have a responsibility to treat the conditions they find with respect . . . and to take the appropriate action to ensure the roads remain as safe as possible.

NEWS that a new “super-school” is to be built in Felixstowe will be welcomed by many families, although there are inevitably going to be fears that a single establishment with 1,800 students could be impersonal.

The solution being put forward by the county council - of a large school containing four largely-independent 450-student units sounds like an innovative solution which could solve many of these fears.

Felixstowe is a town where its two high schools have always operated alongside each other - and indeed they are physically very close to each other. It is not as if any pupil will be faced with a substantially-longer journey as a result of the merger.

And having a single larger school will enable a wider curriculum to be taught - especially in the sixth form where more subject options can be offered.

That should allow some students who would otherwise have had to go to Ipswich to continue their education in their home town.

IPSWICH Town's fine victory over Chesterfield has set up a mouth-watering fourth round clash at Stamford Bridge . . . if Chelsea manage to overcome the feisty Shrimpers of Southend in their replay at Roots Hall.

Next Tuesday's match takes on a new significance for Town fans - who may well be split about what result they would like to see.

Some will be hoping for a historic Southend victory, giving the Tractor Boys a greater chance of a long cup run, while others will fancy a trip to a big Premiership club - and a club which has had problems at home this season.

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