What can be done about casualties in ‘dangerous’ Norwich Road?

Road safety has become a concern in Norwich Road (stock image) Picture: KYLE ABBOTT

Road safety has become a concern in Norwich Road (stock image) Picture: KYLE ABBOTT - Credit: Archant

Police chiefs have been quizzed on the “high levels of casualties” in Ipswich’s “dangerous” Norwich Road.

Suffolk police and crime commissioner Tim Passmore raised community concerns about the road’s safety during today’s accountability and performance panel meeting.

He said there were “high levels of casualties” along the road from the Asda supermarket on the way into Ipswich.

“What do we do about places like Norwich Road?” Mr Passmore asked.

“Part of the problem is that it’s very densely populated but there’s also a concern that it’s becoming a dangerous road.

“What do we do to make other partners more aware.”

Mr Passmore asked whether more enforcement would address the problem.

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Assistant chief constable Simon Megicks said road safety teams had lots of data to analyse what was causing problems and determine solutions.

“Some of it can be enforcement,” he said,

“But we can’t stand in Norwich Road all the time, so it would be part of an integrated process.”

The discussion came during an items of Suffolk’s road safety report for 2017-18.

Mr Megicks reported there were 242 serious collisions last year, and 26 fatalities, which was a reduction of 19.6% and 10.3% respectively, on 2016.

“We are pleased with that, though we’re not resting on our laurels,” he said.

The report identified young people and motorcyclists as the most likely groups to be involved in serious accidents, mirroring national trends.

Mr Megicks also reported that drug driving had been targeted by officers in the past year, which was demonstrated in the 27% increase in offences detected. Meanwhile, however, offences for speeding, mobile phone use and not wearing seatbelts all reduced by between 20-50%.

A separate paper from Suffolk Roadsafe, which looked at casualties from 2012-16, identified regional trends showing Ipswich as having the county’s highest rate of collisions and casualties per head of the population.

Again, young people, aged 16-24, were found to be over-represented among the casualties compared with other age groups.

However, mile for mile, Suffolk’s collision rate was found to 10% lower than Britain overall.