Motorists ignoring estate speed limit

Chairman of the Mereside Tenants and Residents Association John Raine is questioning the money spent on 20 mph signs around the estate

Chairman of the Mereside Tenants and Residents Association John Raine is questioning the money spent on 20 mph signs around the estate

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MOTORISTS are still speeding through a Blackpool council estate despite the introduction of a 20mph zone, it was claimed today.

John Raine, chairman of the Mereside Tenants and Residents Association, says drivers ignore the speed limit because it is unenforceable.

He also claims traffic calming measures do not work because people avoid the roads they have been installed on.

Mr Raine, of Branstree Road, told The Gazette: “There are still drivers coming down here at 50mph and it’s putting children’s lives at risk.

“They know the 20mph speed limit is not enforceable so they just ignore it.

“There are 18 road bumps along Langdale Road to slow traffic down but traffic just goes on to Branstree to avoid them. You get boy racers doing 40 or 45mph, but I have seen some going even faster.

“Thankfully so far we haven’t had any serious accidents, but I have seen a few near misses.”

Earlier this year the issue of speeding was also raised at a meeting of the Clifton PACT (police and community together) meeting when ward councillor Adrian Hutton said he had received various complaints from residents.

Coun Fred Jackson, cabinet member for highways and transport on Blackpool Council, said 20mph zones were designed to be self-enforcing.

Engineering measures such as speed humps or “tables” are used to slow traffic down rather than speed cameras.

He said: “The police do not have the equipment to enforce 20mph zones like they do with a speed limit of 30mph or above.

“Instead engineering work is used in these areas to make drivers slow down and by and large it works.

“On Mereside unfortunately there may be drivers who deliberately break the rules and are not bothered what speed they go over these tables, although they will be damaging their vehicles.

“But evidence shows the vast majority of people do respect the 20mph zones and because of the restrictions, engineering-wise, they do obey them.”

Blackpool also has 20mph zones on Grange Park and outside a number of schools, while residents are being asked for their views on introducing the restriction in Marton ward.