Police crackdown on Moss motorists

Traffic on the narrow stretch of North Houses Lane crossing Marton Moss, scene of several accidents recently. PIC BY ROB LOCK
Traffic on the narrow stretch of North Houses Lane crossing Marton Moss, scene of several accidents recently. PIC BY ROB LOCK
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POLICE have blasted van drivers for flouting the law and causing accidents on a busy road.

But a councillor has warned it is a problem which is bound to continue until the road is widened.

The single-track Moss Road – a well-known cut-through from St Annes to the M55 – is due to be rebuilt as part of a new housing development nearby.

But at the moment it remains a narrow road with passing places – and not suitable for many of the vehicles using it. Police launched a safety crackdown and caught eight drivers in an hour breaking the law.

Vehicles using the road must be less than three tonnes in weight and less than six feet wide – in simple terms that rules out most vans.

Sgt Pete Beresford, of Blackpool Road Policing Unit, said: “This road is not suitable for larger vehicles as there is not enough room for them to pass.

“It can cause vehicles to be forced off the road and we have recently had a spate of injury accidents were vehicles have left the carriageway. This clearly can be very dangerous.

“We will be returning to conduct more enforcement and it is asked that motorists abide by the restrictions for the road.

“Most vans are prohibited from using this road and drivers should be aware of that and take another route.”

The safety of Moss Road has long been a concern and is due to be completely rebuilt by Lancashire County Council.

The work will be funded by Kensington Housing, as part of their successful planning application to build 1,150 homes on land between the Moss and Queensway.

The new road will be two lanes and will solve the current traffic problems.

But just when it will be built remains unclear. Work on the road cannot start 
until the housing development begins.

Kensington haven’t put a start date on the work and declined to comment when contacted by the Gazette.

Howard Henshaw, Lancashire County Councillor for St Annes North, has no doubts that accidents will continue to happen until a new Moss Road is built.

He said: “This is a problem that is going to continue.

“The other main road out of St Annes – Queensway – gets so congested that people are bound to use the Moss instead.

“There should be clear signs up saying no heavy traffic because any single track road is very dangerous and I’m surprised there aren’t more accidents.

“It goes without saying people shouldn’t be driving big transit vans down there but unfortunately some people are a law unto themselves.”

Lancashire County Council confirmed it is due to meet with Kensington soon to discuss when work will begin on the housing development and, in turn, on a new road.

In the meantime, it says it is grateful for police action against drivers flouting the rules.

Andy Ashcroft, highways manager for Fylde coast, said: “The weight restrictions on Moss Road are in place for people’s safety and we’re grateful to the police for their support in enforcing them.”