WSP consultants leading on this for Abingworth Homes have now completed consultations with WSCC Highways following the safety audit of 10 October 2018, and have confirmed the findings of the audit and next steps as follows:
1. Northern build-out area
In general the safety audit noted that the design of the scheme in this area has been conditioned by the fact that the bends in the road militated against a build-out on the eastern carriageway, which would force southbound traffic into the path of northbound vehicles coming around a blind bend. The build-out on the northbound carriageway is, provisionally, considered viable, but the audit found that the details of the current implementation are causing some safety concerns that require addressing.
Initial work measures will include:
- a new sub-plate sign with a ‘Give way to oncoming vehicles’ message installed underneath the existing regulatory sign for vehicles approaching the buildouts
- Installation of new carriageway-edge road markings around the buildout and opposite kerbline to create a further enhancement and visual narrowing to the existing buildout.
- Replacement of the existing bollards with new double-sided bollards with yellow reflective panels
- Further vegetation clearance to maximise visibility.
In addition to these measures, Oakford Homes are liaising with Hyde Homes to investigate the scope to move (or remove) the close-boarded fence north of the northern buildout, to improve the northbound sightline.
To be considered further
The audit has also considered the possibility of additional speed reducing features north of the current build-out (to slow southbound traffic). Once the first set of remedial works are completed there will be a further safety audit site visit to review the effectiveness of the initial measures and make a recommendation as to whether further works are required.
2. Southern build-out area
In general, the safety audit noted that there was no viable option that would meet relevant requirements for a build-out on the northbound side of the road, and found the current arrangement to be working satisfactorily, subject to this further minor work:
- Reinstatement of the ‘Slow’ road marking
3. Next steps
WSP are now producing the technical designs and associated details that will then be forwarded to WSCC for final review and sign-off; Oakford Homes will progress the initial works above and are looking to complete this work as soon as possible.