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Friday, 03 July 2015

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Crossing and 40mph at A595 blackspot

THE family of a pensioner killed on the A595 at Egremont has welcomed new safety measures.

improvements: The busy A595 at Egremont, where a pedestrian crossing is going to be sited

By Julie Morgan

Work starts on Monday on a toucan crossing, and a reduced 40mph speed limit between East Road and Clintz roundabouts.

In April 2010, 94-year-old pedestrian Thomas Johnstone, a former head pharmacist at the West Cumberland Hospital and father-of-eight, was killed after a collision with a car on North Road as he was taking flowers to his wife’s grave.

And in April 2001, Egremont resident Elizabeth Farran, 81, died after being hit by a car while crossing the road to visit the cemetery.

Fr Paul Johnstone, son of Mr Johnstone and parish priest at St Mary’s Church, Cleator, said: “I would just like to say how pleased I am that something has been done about that crossing.

“As the bypass separates the town from the cemetery there are always likely to be older people crossing at that point to visit their relatives’ graves – this will make it safer for them and everyone who crosses there.

“I hope motorists will be patient if their journey is delayed a little. This is far better than being involved (however innocently) in an accident.”

Another son, Richard Johnstone, was pleased that the crossing is to be implemented but criticised the original layout which resulted in people needing to cross a busy road to reach the cemetery.

“I’d hope that the current state of highway design and approval would not allow such an obvious broken link to a local amenity,’’ he added.

At an inquest in 2011, West Cumbria coroner, David Roberts, urged the Highways Agency to keep the stretch of the road on which Mr Johnstone died “firmly under review”.

County councillor Frank Morgan, who chairs the Local A595 Liaison Group, said: “The group has been calling for action on this part of the A595 for some time, so I’m delighted the Highways Agency is now pressing ahead with this safety scheme.

“Tragically there have been fatalities on this road as well as a number of other accidents. The safety of all road users is our top priority and I believe these measures will make a big difference in this area.”

Work on the crossing will take place from March 24 outside peak hours, from 9.30am to 3.30pm daily. Both northbound and southbound lanes will be affected. Temporary traffic signals will be in use during the crossing work, with traffic taking turns to travel in each direction.

There will also be short pedestrian diversions while footways are excavated to install the crossing. The Highways Agency thank drivers for their patience during this time.

Have your say

There have been a lot of comments about Egremont folk being too fat and lazy to use the underpass, I, for 1 do use the underpass, but would not use it at nighttime as it is dimly lit and has a stench that can only be described as urine,probably left by some inconsiderate people who don't appreciate that other people have to use it. I wouldn't dream of trying to cross that stretch of road when the trainee formula 1 drivers from sellafield are making their way home. This new crossing is a good thing but i can see it causing more problems with inconsiderate drivers blocking the roundabout at the bottom of east road more than they already do. I live in Egremont and am neither fat nor lazy, just angry that we are being portrayed as such.

Posted by Mrs R on 30 March 2014 at 07:36

the underpass is 300 yards south from the proposed crossing - giving a one way trip of around 700 yards (including the length of the underpass) possible round trip for an elderly person of 3/4 of a mile!!!!!

Posted by road user on 27 March 2014 at 18:54

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