Vandals jeopardise action to improve traffic flow

Vandalism is jeopardising our ability to make informed decisions about future traffic management around Malton and Norton.

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In February, an experimental 18-month heavy goods vehicle ban was put in place on the level crossing between Malton and Norton, prohibiting goods vehicles with an operating weight exceeding 7.5 tonnes. The ban is among measures designed to improve air quality by removing HGVs from the town centre and onto the A64.

Since the ban was instituted, the County Council has been monitoring the movement of HGVs in the area to enable it to gauge the effectiveness of the ban and to consider its next steps.

However, traffic counters on streets in the town have been repeatedly vandalised, adversely affecting the County Council’s ability to gather and analyse data to enable officers to recommend a course of action.

Traffic counters – which are visible as thin tubing fastened across the width of a road – are in place on half a dozen roads around Malton and Norton. Three of these – in Old Malton Road, Welham Road and Castlegate – have been targeted three times, with the tubing being ripped up. Contractors have repaired the monitors only for them to be damaged again.

County Councillor Don Mackenzie, Executive Member for Highways, said: “We are determined to improve the environment for residents and visitors to Malton and Norton. This experimental ban is one aspect of that work, but we have to be able to monitor it effectively to understand its impact and consider whether to make it permanent or whether changes are needed.

“Whoever is damaging our traffic counters is making it more difficult for our officers to do this work and is potentially having an impact on all local people if we aren’t able to make informed decisions about traffic management. If anyone has information that might end this vandalism, I urge them to contact the police.”

Anyone with any information that could assist the investigation is asked to contact North Yorkshire Police on 101 and pass information to the Force Control Room.

If you wish to remain anonymous, you can call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Please quote reference 12180172080 when passing on information.

This story was published 17 September 2018