Safety plea on border road

By Patrick LowmanCAMPAIGNERS are stepping up their demands for major improvements along a dangerous stretch of road on the Suffolk/Essex which has claimed another life.

By Patrick Lowman

CAMPAIGNERS are stepping up their demands for major improvements along a dangerous stretch of road on the Suffolk/Essex which has claimed another life.

They are calling for Suffolk and Essex county councils work together to improve safety along the A134 between Great Horkesley and Leavenheath, where three people have been killed in recent years.

There have also been at least six other serious injury accidents and another 10 minor--injury accidents on the route in the past three years.

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Protestors have stepped up their campaign following the latest fatal accident on Horkesley Hill, which claimed the life of bar manager Darren Puljic just days before his 21st birthday last Saturday (14).

An elderly married couple, both 67, from Great Horkesley, are still in hospital fighting for their lives after they were seriously injured in the collision last Saturday.

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Residents in Leavenheath, Nayland and Great Horkesley are now signing a petition urging the authorities to take immediate action to improve safety along the route.

They say improved road markings, a reduced speed limit and improvements to the camber of the road need to be implemented along the A134 to prevent further casualties.

Richard Cave, who lives in Nayland, said: "For many years this has been a particularly dangerous stretch of the A134.

"Speed may be one cause, but the road alignment and five turnings are in need of major improvements. A full-scale review and implementation by both county councils is long overdue. Hence the residents of Nayland and surrounding villages have started a campaign.

"How many lives have to be lost, or people maimed before action by the councils is finally undertaken?"

Another campaigner, James Finch, who also lives in Nayland, said: "Many of us were appalled and dismayed at yet another accident on this stretch of road. We have been asking the county surveyors of both counties to review the situation for some time without success.

"In addition to collecting signatures we are asking the authorities to take action to prevent further loss of life."

Suffolk County Council's safety team leader, Rod Sore, promised safety improvements would be carried out in the Nayland area in the next couple of months.

He said he was also happy to discuss the matter with Essex County Council to discuss the problems on both sides of the border.

"We were aware of problems in Nayland, but this is the first time we have heard of the level of concern both sides of the county border.

"We will soon carry out safety improvements at the crossroads at Nayland, and will be introducing signs that light up telling drivers to slow down if they are travelling too fast.

"We are aware there is a problem with speed along the route and we welcome any input from the public. We are also happy to consult with Essex about the problems along the route."

But a spokesman for Essex County Council said: "We have not included this stretch of road as an accident reduction site, so it is unlikely we will do any work there at the moment."

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