Increased enforcement and improved road safety measures were on the agenda as Police and Crime Commissioner, Philip Wilkinson met with concerned residents who live in villages along the A338.
Following a recent collision, where a Home Bargains lorry narrowly missed a cottage and ended up in a ditch in Collingbourne Ducis, the PCC joined Wiltshire Police Assistant Chief Constable (ACC), David Minty, Danny Kruger MP and local councillors to discuss practical measures to make the road safer and reduce the number of HGVs using the route.
Police and Crime Commissioner, Philip Wilkinson said: “I very much share the concerns raised by the more than 200 people who attended this public meeting, in addition to their longer-term ambitions to make the route safer.
“There isn’t a quick fix to this, but there are some immediate steps that can be taken to increase enforcement and improve road safety and I’m already discussing the viability of restricting the licences of haulage firms to increase their accountability and improve their consideration for nearby residents.
“The very valid concerns raised during this meeting will not be ignored and we must now take tangible action before this situation escalates further.”
Proposals discussed during the meeting include:
Wiltshire Police, ACC David Minty said: “Since this meeting, I have tasked both our roads policing unit, and the local community policing team to increase patrols on, and alongside the A338 with the view of directly targeting those drivers who break the law.
“Working with the PCC’s office, we are already scoping the possibility of average speed cameras on the route, but enforcement only solves part of the problem and we will take steps with the PCC, Wiltshire Council, Danny Kruger MP and local councillors to prevent these incidents of poor and sometimes dangerous driving from happening in the first place.”
Devizes MP, Danny Kruger has pledged to a further meeting with residents, this time joined by Cllr Mark McClelland, Wiltshire Council’s Cabinet Member for Transport to view the pinch points causing the most concern over the next few weeks.
Danny Kruger MP said: “We can and must do more to stop HGVs using this route. It was not designed for this type of vehicle and, in my view, should be de-designated as a primary route.
“This is, however, not something that we can achieve overnight, and may require legislative changes to make possible. There are, thankfully, some things that we can focus on in the short to medium term - including various traffic calming measures and limits on HGVs - and I will work with Wiltshire Council and Wiltshire Police in the coming months to explore what is possible and I aim to update residents in the Autumn.”
Published Wednesday 3 August 2022