Sensible measure

Since 1999 Graffham Parish Council has been pressing the West Sussex County Council (WSCC) to recognise the severity of the dangerous driving at the turn to Graffham on the A285 at Duncton and to take steps to improve its safety.

It is widely acknowledged that although speed is of a concern, it is the overtaking manoeuvre on this section of road which causes problems for those using the junction, resulting in accidents ranging from severe injury to countless, unreported, near misses.

For different reasons the WSCC has ruled out:

- A roundabout (no room)

- Central reservation (no room)

- Separate right-hand turn lane (no room)

- Road diversion around April Cottage (too costly)

- Double white lines (does not meet existing government criteria).

WSCC have put in place signs and speed warnings to make a ‘no-overtaking zone’, but regular users and observers of the junction will confirm that these warnings are frequently ignored.

Graffham Parish Council is strongly of the view that double white lines would improve safety at this junction, because drivers are more familiar with their intent than the signage for the no-overtaking zone, and would therefore be more likely to comply.

It is high time that blind compliance with guidelines and procedures should not be allowed to get in the way of making safer one of the country’s most dangerous roads. WSCC, given that they feel unable to go beyond the given set of criteria, should be encouraged to make representation to the Department of Transport to enable this sensible measure to be implemented.

Hilary Major

Graffham Parish Council