Information about the traffic schemes that help to cut the number of traffic collisions and injuries across the county.
Road safety engineering schemes are designed to cut the number of traffic collisions and injuries.
There are two types of scheme:
- Highway improvements schemes, such as right-turn lanes at junctions and the installation of traffic lights and pedestrian crossings; and
- Traffic calming measures, such as road humps, chicanes and mini-roundabouts.
Each year, we produce a list of sites where there have been four or more personal injury collisions in the last three years. These sites are known as collision cluster sites and are reported to our Area Committees as part of the annual collision statistics report.
Investigations into the sites are undertaken and plans are put forward for implementation. We also investigate routes where there is a constant personal injury collision problem. Having carried out the analysis work, identified road collision problems and implemented solutions, we monitor and measure the effectiveness of our safety engineering work.
Road safety schemes are expensive and it should be noted that we have limited funding.
Therefore, approved requests will be placed on a list in priority rank order. The available budget and the type of schemes required will determine how quickly we can work down the list.
Parish and town councils have an important role to protect the visual character of their villages and towns. As representatives of the local community, they provide a key communication link between residents and the county council. The local parish or town council is consulted with on most requests that we receive e.g. new road signs, road markings, pedestrian crossings etc to ensure that they are in support.
We would therefore encourage residents who consider there is a need for a road safety scheme to discuss the request with the local parish or town council. This is so that they can indicate if they are in support of the request. We are unlikely to authorise requests that are not supported by the parish or town council.
It would be helpful when making your request to the parish or town council and the county council if you could provide the following details to support your request:
- the type of road safety scheme required;
- the proposed location of new road safety scheme;
- the reason for a road safety scheme to be provided; and
- your contact details.
Requests for a road safety scheme will be dealt with as follows:
- Stage 1 - the request is received from a member of the public or a town or parish council.
- Stage 2 - personal injury collision records at the location of the requested scheme will be assessed against trigger criteria and feasibility of requested scheme.
- Stage 3 - the applicant will be sent a response and informed if request is feasible.
- Stage 4 - feasible road safety engineering schemes will be placed on the reserve list of integrated transport scheme awaiting implementation or, if the necessary criteria is triggered, the scheme may be processed for implementation.
If a road safety engineering scheme has been identified through the collision cluster site process and remedial measures put forward then these will generally be implemented within that financial year.
For feasible road safety schemes requested by members of the public or town and parish councils these will be considered for inclusion on the reserve list of integrated transport schemes awaiting implementation. These schemes are annually assessed using the scheme prioritisation system to establish the positive and negative impacts of any proposed scheme against the local transport plan objectives which results in a score establishing the priority of a scheme. Provided that the proposed scheme is deliverable funding is usually allocated on the basis of this score.
It should however be noted that inclusion on the reserve list does not automatically mean that the requested scheme will be delivered. Schemes are subject to the necessary funding being made available.
Road humps remain the most effective traffic calming feature currently available at reducing traffic speeds and, consequently, the number and severity of casualties resulting from road traffic collisions.
The effectiveness of road humps must be balanced against the strong local feelings by residents and drivers alike. Common complaints are:
- Noise and, to a lesser extent, vibration especially if there is a relatively high flow of heavy commercial vehicles;
- Impact on the streetscape caused by the road humps and the associated sign; and
- Problems experienced by particular road user groups, notably bus companies and the emergency services and also motorcyclists, pedal cyclists, pedestrians and horse riders.
A speed cushion is a form of road hump designed to reduce these problems. Speed cushions may be used as an alternative as they do not extend across the whole width of the carriageway and can therefore be straddled by larger vehicles such as buses and lorries.
It must be remembered that traffic calming schemes are only introduced in areas there is a strong justification that they will help to improve the location accident record.