‘Accidents will happen’ - dirty road signs risk causing collisions, says bus driver
- Credit: Archant
Suffolk’s road signs are unreadable and could cause accidents - according to a bus driver who said their poor state meant he nearly crashed.
Harlequin Travel bus driver John Sherman from Ipswich, aged 50, has started a social media campaign to draw attention to the issue.
Mr Sherman said: "Someone is going to come down a road and end up in a field or a hedge soon.
"I drive buses so I see all of this.
"These are warning signs so they're important and if you don't have them accidents will happen.
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"I nearly had a head-on collision with someone myself on the Old Norwich road in Claydon recently."
Many of the road signs that Mr Sherman has photographed for his campaign are shown to be either covered in dirt and grit from the passing vehicles - or concealed by shrubbery so they are unrecognisable.
MORE: Suffolk Highways launch community self-help schemeBut Suffolk Highways has claimed it cannot afford to maintain the roads unless it is an issue of safety.
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A spokesman said: "The limitations on local authority budgets means that Suffolk Highways must prioritise its funding and focus on maintaining a safe network for all users.
"As a result, we now only prioritise the maintenance of mandatory signage and warning signage on major routes."
But Mr Sherman is concerned the risk will increase when the clocks change for winter.
He said: "As winter is nearly here, the nights are getting longer and the reflective strips on the signs are more important.
"But most of them have worn away and they're easy to replace.
"I get that the council might not want to replace a whole metal sign due to costs, but the reflective strips are easily done.
"It will cost them more in the long run if they don't maintain them properly."
Mr Sherman hopes that his social media campaign will bring awareness and put pressure on the council to maintain the signs to a better standard.
The Suffolk Highways spokesman added: "We encourage the public to report safety defects to us via our highways online reporting tool.
"Once we are aware of a specific issue, we can arrange an inspection and repair."
To report a highways issue, visit https://highwaysreporting.suffolk.gov.uk/
To report a highways issue use the online reporting tool found here.