Suffolk: Anger amongst business owners over growing delays on A14 and Orwell Bridge

Traffic queueing near Junction 54 a over the Orwell Bridge on the A14 due to the onion spill further

Traffic queueing near Junction 54 a over the Orwell Bridge on the A14 due to the onion spill further up the road - Credit: Andrew Partridge

More than 100 businesses have voiced their anger over the growing number of A14 traffic delays near the Orwell Bridge in a survey.

Suffolk Chamber of Commerce (SCC) is urging companies to complete a survey aimed at tackling the problem after businesses in Ransomes Europark, Ipswich, complained of a surge in traffic congestion east and west of junction 57 on the A14.

They claim it is having a detrimental effect on business and trade.

A total of 72 ‘incident support operatives’ who patrolled the A14 between Ipswich and Bury St Edmunds were made redundant in July 2012 by engineering consultancy firm Atkins.

It was a move which has affected the time it takes for broken down vehicles or accidents to be cleared, the SCC argued.

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Nick Burfield, policy director at SCC, said more than 100 surveys have been returned.

“Businesses are very frustrated,” he added. “People can’t get to work and businesses suffer with supplies, so we are asking them to tell us how much these problems are costing them.

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“The 72 incident support operatives were there to keep things flowing but that does not seem to happen now after they were made redundant. It is taking longer to clear up and get traffic flowing again.

“It needs to be improved.”

John Dugmore, chief executive of SCC, said: “Time and time again the A14 is the issue that businesses in Suffolk tell us needs urgent attention.

“It is the main arterial route in and out of the county for firms. It cannot wait for investment if it is to serve a modern economy.”

The findings of the survey are expected to be unveiled in four weeks.

A spokesman for Atkins said: “As a result of changes to the way the Area 6 strategic road network needed to be managed we entered into a redundancy consultation with colleagues in our UK highways and transportation business working on this contract.

“It was regrettable, but as a responsible company we have to respond to the needs of our client in the best way possible, making sure that our staffing levels match expected workloads.”

To complete the survey, visit

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