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Fresh calls for an upgrade of the A417 Air Balloon Roundabout after three car smash

By EchoLauraC  |  Posted: April 21, 2014

  • Calls for The Missing Link on the A417 following a smash at the Air Balloon Roundabout on Sunday

  • The Air Balloon Roundabout

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Fresh calls have been made for an upgrade of a notorious blackspot following a three car pile-up.

Three people were taken to hospital following an Easter weekend smash on the A417, near the Air Balloon Roundabout.

The stretch of road near the roundabout, towards Nettleton Bottom road was closed in both directions by emergency services on Sunday night following the smash.

The crash had led to renewed calls for something to be done about the bottleneck, which claimed the lives of four people this winter.

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A spokesman for Gloucestershire police said three people were taken to hospital by South West Ambulance Service, but the drivers and passengers were not thought to have been seriously injured.

A grey BMW three series, a white Nissan Qashqai, and a blue Vauxhall Astra were involved in the three car pile-up at around 5.20pm.

Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service confirmed one woman had to be cut out of her vehicle.

Businesses, political parties and various organisations have come together to try to find a solution to the long-term congestion problems at the roundabout.

There have been more than 30 fatalities on the road since 2000 and around 4,000 people have added their names to the Fill the A417 Missing Link in Gloucestershire campaign.

It calls for a new £255 million dual carriageway bypass the A417 Loop, between Cowley roundabout and Brockworth.

The proposal has now been submitted to the government as part of a strategic economic plan for Gloucestershire, which supporters hope will gain financial backing in Spring 2015.

Councillor Paul Hodgkinson (LD, Churn Valley), said: “Obviously the past six months have been pretty awful for that stretch of road.

“Last November we had the deaths of three people in one weekend and since then a serious of accidents culminated in Sunday night’s crash.

“It is extremely sad not only for those involved, but also their families.

“It reinforces the urgent need to get something sorted as soon as possible.

“Although the circumstances of this latest crash are not known, the A417 has some challenging conditions, particularly in bad weather and because of the layout of the road.

“It means you get traffic hurtling down, at what can be high speeds, with no crash barrier, and sadly that means there will be accidents and they can be serious.”

When the Echo launched the campaign for the A417 Loop at the beginning of this year, councillor Mark Hawthorne, leader of the county council, said it was time for Gloucestershire to speak with one voice in calling for the £255 million scheme.

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9 comments

  • SULAcrew  |  April 22 2014, 9:31AM

    It will take some time before a permanent solution for this stretch of road is implemented. Sorry for stating the obvious, but why don't they install a crash-barrier in between to two lanes? I figure there isn't much space for a proper, substantial barrier, but surely even a simple one will save lives!

  • Matt1006  |  April 22 2014, 8:14AM

    So the road caused this accident, did it? Yet again people jumping on the bandwagon after an accident, without knowing any of the facts on what caused the accident. How many tens of thousands of vehicles passed through that exact location over the Easter weekend without crashing into each other? Let the accident investigators determine what happened, before suggesting works are needed to the roads - might be that work is needed to the driving skills of one of the drivers involved.

    |   -19
  • Tree1974  |  April 21 2014, 6:55PM

    It was about 100 yards away from the roundabout. I was unfortunate enough to pass is minutes after it happened. I travel that stretch of road frequently and I am constantly amazed that there are not more accidents caused by poor lane disapline and people fighting for 'their' space on the road when coming off the roundabout and traveling up the hill.

  • daveofglos  |  April 21 2014, 4:52PM

    I can't see that the road in the location pictured had anything to do with the accident. I conclude something went wrong with one of the vehicles or it was bad driving. You can't keep blaming the road...

  • jackson99  |  April 21 2014, 4:15PM

    If Conditions are bad then drivers should slow down , roads do not cause accidents people do. Improving the road will not stop all accidents

  • IsitJimKerr  |  April 21 2014, 2:14PM

    NibNobs......................that's ridiculous. What if a deer ran across the road, and one driver braked, swerved etc. Does that make it his fault? And if the bill runs into thousands, they may have to sell their home, putting a strain on the economy. You really haven't though this through, have you? Either way, the driver 'at fault' will have excess's to pay, ncb loss, etc. It's all part of the cost of motoring.

  • taylke  |  April 21 2014, 2:07PM

    The vast majority of road accidents are caused by the carelessness, impatience or sheer stupidity of one of the drivers involved. Short of reducing the speed limit to 4 mph and having a man with a red flag in front of every vehicle, there is a limit to what can be done.

  • Kay_Powell  |  April 21 2014, 1:21PM

    While I totally agree that the whole section needs to be upgraded, the photo clearly shows that the crash did not happen at the Air Balloon roundabout.

    |   -23
  • NibNobs  |  April 21 2014, 11:29AM

    The driver who's fault it was should get an invoice for the emergency services's time & fuel to attend and his/her insurance should not pay out to cover that.

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