Operation Stack must be rethought

WHENEVER high winds close the Port of Felixstowe, residents of nearby communities suffer severe inconvenience as the authorities launch Operation Stack to hold lorries heading to the dock.

WHENEVER high winds close the Port of Felixstowe, residents of nearby communities suffer severe inconvenience as the authorities launch Operation Stack to hold lorries heading to the dock.

However there is now increasing concern about how often the port is being closed to lorries and the inadequacy of its own response when high winds mean cranes cannot operate.

The A14 was designed as a fast road linking Felixstowe with Ipswich and the rest of the country. It was not meant to be a 15-mile lorry park every time the wind blows up.

When the road was blocked by lorries this week it effectively left the entire Felixstowe peninsula at risk.

It would have been impossible for emergency vehicles to get through if needed which would have meant that lives and property were at risk.

What seems even more incredible is that the Highways Agency was not able to tell drivers that the port was open again so traffic was continuing to bring Trimley, Kirton and Walton to a standstill while the A14 was almost empty.

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The communities living near Felixstowe have been badly let down by the port and the Highways Agency.

In the 21st century with modern technology like satellite navigation systems fitted to most lorries it seems quite incredible that the port and highways agency cannot manage things in a better way when the wind blows.

If the lorries cannot be stopped before they reach the Felixstowe area the port, with the vast amount of land it owns, should be able to find somewhere for them to park up so they do not have to block the Queen's highway.

IT IS difficult to imagine a more depressing start to the speedway system for Witches fans after the disastrous meeting against Reading last night.

Defeat was bad enough, but to lose star rider Mark Loram for up to a year with a badly broken leg is a real blow for the team.

Everyone's thoughts will be with Loram as he starts his long journey back to fitness. He is a popular figure at Foxhall as well as being one of the finest and most experienced riders on the team.

We wish him well for his recovery, but in the meantime his team-mates must recover from yesterday's double blow.

The Witches can draw some consolation from the fact that they only lost 47-43 against a very strong side which is bound to be challenging for honours at the end of the season.

Let us hope they soon give their fans something to cheer about.

OUR Somebody's Daughter appeal has benefited from a boost of more than £1,000 thanks to the bowling night at Kingpin in Martlesham earlier this month.

With money coming into the appeal regularly, there are real hopes that a new centre to help drug users and keep them away from the danger of prostitution will eventually be set up in the town.

It is very good news that people have taken the appeal to heart, hopefully allowing something good to emerge from the dreadful events at the end of last year.

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