Danger junction - work starts
WORK is today under way at last to stop traffic using a junction which has contributed to the death of three people.But highways experts have changed their minds about putting gates at the sideroad on the A12 to ban vehicles using it and are instead using "no access" signs.
WORK is today under way at last to stop traffic using a junction which has contributed to the death of three people.
But highways experts have changed their minds about putting gates at the sideroad on the A12 to ban vehicles using it and are instead using "no access" signs.
However, work which will really stop the fear of more accidents will not be done yet - county council officers say a public inquiry likely to be needed to close the gap in the central reservation because of rights of way issues.
It will be four years this Christmas since Melton couple Edward and Pamela Bishopp were killed when their car was in collision with a coal lorry at the Foxhall-Brightwell gap.
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In the 20 years since the dual carriageway opened three others have died on the route, four people have seriously injured and another five have been slightly hurt.
The Evening Star launched a campaign to close the gap and parish councillors have warned that every day it remains open there is the risk of another death.
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A county council spokeswoman said it had been decided to put up signs saying no motor access instead of gates at Kennels Road because the route still provided access to two houses.
It is understood it was felt gates would prove difficult, even if only those householders were allowed through and had keys.
"The householders affected will still have permission to use it, but only them and cyclists, horses and pedestrians," she said.
It is understood the households are being issued with permits.
The main problem had been lorries from a nearby business using the junction. Some lorries had been crossing the A12 using the gap in the central reservation to swing south the Seven Hills.
Councillors felt the ban would remove the "unacceptably high" risk of an accident with the A12's 30,000 vehicles a day. Surveys have revealed around 76 vehicles a day currently use the Kennel Lane junctions each side of the dual carriageway.
In the long term, closure of the gap remains the way forward, but this is likely to lead to formal objections, resulting in a public inquiry and possibly the payment of compensation to the people with a right of access through the gap.
The costs associated with this make it difficult to justify proceeding with this course of action at this time.
What do you think of the traffic ban? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail EveningStarLetters@eveningstar.co.uk