Drivers receive apology after road chaos

THOUSANDS of jaded motorists received an apology today after they were caught up in an Ipswich town centre jam due to emergency road works. Traffic on the streets surrounding the roundabout at the junction of Duke Street, Bishop's Hill and Back Hamlet ground to a shuddering halt yesterday as EDF Energy repaired damage to the road above electricity cables.

THOUSANDS of jaded motorists received an apology today after they were caught up in an Ipswich town centre jam due to emergency road works.

Traffic on the streets surrounding the roundabout at the junction of Duke Street, Bishop's Hill and Back Hamlet ground to a shuddering halt yesterday as EDF Energy repaired damage to the road above electricity cables.

The effects of the repairs, which took place throughout much of the day, spread along a number of arterial roads bringing major delays to the eastern fringes of the town.

Roads in the centre of town were also hit.

Power company EDF Energy today apologised for the delays.

A spokesman said the company was carrying out major works around the waterfront to deliver power to the new developments in the area.

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He said: “While laying cables in Duke Street on Sunday our contractor reinstated a road crossing. In line with normal procedures we inspected this work but unfortunately found that parts of the trench had sunk in places following heavy rain.

“For safety reasons we took the decision to reinstate the whole trench again. Permanent reinstatement work was carried out yesterday afternoon.

“An EDF Energy Networks street works inspector remained on site to oversee the work which was completed at 11.30pm.

“We would like to apologise for any inconvenience this essential work caused.”

Many motorists took lengthy detours to avoid the worst of the congestion.

One driver caught up in the chaos described the situation as “ridiculous”.

He added: “The traffic just wasn't moving and most of the eastern side of town seemed to be affected.”

Two accidents in Ipswich towards the end of the rush hour - in Brunswick Road and Crown Street - only served to exacerbate the problem.

The latest traffic delays come only weeks after lengthy works at the junction of Felixstowe Road and Bixley Road.

Were you caught up in yesterday's chaos? Could the situation have been better handled? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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