Norfolk's most dangerous road routes revealed

Thursday, January 28, 2010
11:00 AM

Victoria Nicholls

A road safety campaigner from Norfolk has called for more responsibility to be placed on the shoulders of drivers following the publication of a map that highlights the country's most dangerous roads.

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A road safety campaigner from Norfolk has called for more responsibility to be placed on the shoulders of drivers following the publication of a map that highlights the country's most dangerous roads.

The map, produced by the Road Safety Foundation, is based on the statistical risk of death or serious injury for 2005-07 on motorways and A roads across the country.

It reveals that the majority of Norfolk and Suffolk's A roads are considered to have a low to medium risk. But two roads in our region have been placed in the second of five categories - marking them out as medium-high risk routes.

One is the notorious stretch of the A1101 through Wisbech between Long Sutton and Outwell, where signs warn motorists of the number of accidents that have happened. Last year,pensioner Roy Ashton helped fund a leaflet campaign calling for safety measures at the accident black spot on the road in Wisbech where his wife Sadet (Sue) died in a car crash.

The other medium-high risk route has been identified as the A1062 between Potter Heigham and Hoveton. Villagers have become so concerned about safety of pedestrians along the road that they have set up the Three Rivers Way Association to lobby for an eight-mile walking and cycling path to be created.

A Norfolk County Council spokesman said a total of eight people had been killed or seriously injured on the A1062 over the three-year period analysed by the Road Safety Foundation, but added that the figure had dropped to one in 2008 and one 2009.

He said steps were being taken to emphasise the nature of the road and its setting so that drivers adjust their driving accordingly, as part of the Rural Road Safety Demonstration Project which is aimed at reducing the number and severity of accidents on fast rural roads. Measures include clearing verges of undergrowth, installing barriers at obstructions and replacing road sign posts with safer alternatives.

Responding to the Road Safety Foundation's latest analysis that is aimed at helping make Britain's roads the “safest in the world”, Liz Voysey, representative for road safety groups Brake and Roadpeace, said the onus of safe driving should be on motorists.

“They talk about the A roads, but every crash and collision is caused by someone who was totally incompetent or negligent,” she said. “I'm not saying we should rule out limiting the damage, but at the end of the day every road in this country is passable. You can go from A to B anywhere within this country without coming to harm if you obey the law and health and safety initiatives that are in place.”

Mrs Voysey, of Dereham, lost her 19-year-old daughter Amy Upcraft in a crash at North Tuddenham in 2004. She added: “My daughter would be alive today if the person that killed her had driven within the law and wasn't negligent.”

The third category, which pinpoints medium-risk roads, includes a long stretch of the A134 in both directions from Thetford, the A149 between Cromer and Great Yarmouth, and the rural A145 between Beccles and Blythburgh.

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