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Speed limit is 'not to blame' for A38 crashes

By The Citizen  |  Posted: November 22, 2012

A38 at Kingsway

A38 at Kingsway

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A 70mph speed limit along the A38 is not to blame for a series of crashes.

That's the view of a Gloucestershire County Council investigation into the speed limit along the dual carriageway at the Kingsway junction.

The investigation was called for after the death of motorcyclist Martin Acock, 43, from Stroud, when he collided with a lorry back in October.

The cause of that accident will not be revealed until an inquest is heard.

But angry parish councillors say it is one death too many and demanded an inquiry.

Councillor Anna Mozol, chairman, said: "I think it is telling that it has taken three fatalities until the county council would do something about it."

Fellow parish councillor Julian Powell said: "They should replace the lights with a roundabout."

Officers from the Gloucestershire Road Safety Partnership, Gloucestershire Highways and police looked into the accidents that have occurred and visited the site last week.

They found that speed was not a factor in any of the incidents.

They say the 70mph limit is appropriate.

But they did admit they would make some changes, including amending the signal timings to help traffic flow more easily, changing the pedestrian phase across the side road to help people cross the road and possibly moving the sign indicating the right turn to Kingsway from the south.

The investigation was called for by county councillor Jackie Hall (C, Quedgeley).

She said: "While it seems clear that speed has not been a factor in the six previous accidents, I will still be pressing the Gloucestershire Road Safety Partnership to keep an eye on this in future."

Investigator Andrew Parker Mowbray said: "Based on the collision data and the site visit, concerns that the speed of vehicles may have been a major factor in the reported collisions appear to be unfounded.

"However, we will continue to monitor this junction and pick up issues that arise."

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  • dcfc79  |  November 27 2012, 5:35PM

    Not much point chnaging the speed limit as there would still be drivers who would still do 70.

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  • Quedkings  |  November 24 2012, 8:58PM

    Surley the most obvious problem with junction is how poorly lit it is? did the councils investigation not highlight that not a single piece of street furniture is illuminated & hasnt been for some time? Together with the street lighting being to far/ insufficent to illuminate the junction adeqautely. Changing this junction to a roundabout will not simply solve all the problems as the Waterwells roundabout has had its far share of colisions (including fatalities). If improvements are needed my suggestions are as follows: 1) Street furntiture needs to be illuminated. 2) Improve the lighting. 3) Install overhead style traffic signals clearly visable from a greater distance (the same as is installed at the end of the bypass (towards Gloucester). 4) Resite the signs for Kingsway to make them clearer for drivers. 5) Extend the slipway lane into Kingsway Southbound - you try slowing down to take that bend we the driver behind is determined to maintain 70 mph when driving only a couple of feet from your bumper!! 6) Extend the right turn refuge lane into kingsway (northbound carrageway) - the existing lane is woefully to short if ASDA do build there. 7) Make alterations to signal times to allow an extra few seconds before signals change to green - just in case someone can't stop on a red signal!! 8) Consider installing 300, 200 + 100 markers before the lights & slip roads. 9) Consider Rumble strips before the lights in both directions. 10) Have a proper public consolation into opening up all the other entrances in or out of kingsway - Chatcombe Ave, Naas Lane at QWFC & the under pass - even if these where restricted to one way or time limited! None of these are particually expensive ideas & alot cheaper & less disruptive than installing a roundabout.

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  • debbiecc  |  November 24 2012, 8:52PM

    by liverpoolfc "Correct me if i'm wrong but i thought the 70mph speed limit was just allowed on the motorway?" The 70mph speed limit also applies to dual carriageways where the carriageway has two lanes or more in each direction and where there's some kind of barrier between the two directions of traffic, such as a grass verge, metal barriers etc. The only time a dual carriageway isn't 70 is when it's got signs up stating differently. It's a common enough misconception LiverpoolFC - just like folk who think A roads where the national speed limit signs are up are 50mph instead of the 60mph maximum speed permitted. (not a know all, honest; work make us have half day driving assessments and re-training every couple of years and I've just been on one)

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  • liverpoolfc  |  November 24 2012, 7:31PM

    Correct me if i'm wrong but i thought the 70mph speed limit was just allowed on the motorway?

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  • IsitJimKerr  |  November 24 2012, 1:56PM

    "If thats right and most people are travelling along there at 40mph or more in the wet, a set of traffic lights may not be the best type of junction."..........kerching, I knew I'd get there in the end!

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  • annalou27  |  November 23 2012, 6:29PM

    I do believe a roundabout would be the way ahead, especially if the Asda gets the green light (pardon the pun). As I mentioned earlier, there is a severe lack of signage informing you about the lights if you are travelling from pets at home towards Kingsway. By the time the warning sign is seen you are almost upon the lights, now imagine if you are not from this area, travelling in that direction at 70MPH + it doesn't leave you a lot of time to brake if the lights change to red. JosieHawkins, you are quite right there have been far more than 6 accidents at this junction in the last three years, someone obviously is fudging the number of accidents so that nothing needs to be done to rectify the problem. With the way the weather has been over the last few days and the time of the year I will be very suprised if there is not another accident on this stretch of road before the year is out. I drive towards Waterwells in the morning from Kingsway, but I refuse to drive back that way on my way home, I opt for Naas Lane, the stretch from Waterwells scares me, by rights I should be in teh inner lane but then that makes it dangerous to come across to exit into Kingsway sometimes with some of the drivers speeding along the road, so because it is just a short stretch from the roundabout to the Kingsway exit, I stay in the out lane keeping to the speed limit or just under and I have had other drivers sitting so close to my car I could converse with them!

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  • safeandnice  |  November 23 2012, 4:04PM

    If thats right and most people are travelling along there at 40mph or more in the wet, a set of traffic lights may not be the best type of junction.

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  • safeandnice  |  November 23 2012, 3:48PM

    If youre travelling at 40mph in the 3 seconds the lights are amber you could travel 176ft. From that link your stopping distance is around 120ft. If its wet and it doubles 40mph is no good to you

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  • safeandnice  |  November 23 2012, 3:25PM

    Good stopping distances http://tinyurl.com/d9zybav Jim if youre 100ft away from the lights at 60mph when they change to amber, by the time youve realised you'll be 40ft away from them, so you'll just go on through before they change to red. If it's raining is it likely you'll be approaching them at 60mph? Speed limits are there to be effective for a whole stretch of road. You dont put in a speed limit just for a junction. If you need to slow down for a junction youre allowed to do it. You dont need a speed limit to tell you what speed to approach a junction or what to do about the weather.

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  • IsitJimKerr  |  November 23 2012, 2:32PM

    dcfc79....at last, a bit of common.....what speeds do you go through lights, and given the same situation as I outlined for safeandnice, what would you do?

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