Highways England has released startling figures of drivers deliberately ignoring closures on the A13 in Essex.
During 2015 more than 40 cases of the public ignoring closures were recorded by road workers on the improvement scheme to widen the A13 and M25 junction 30.
The interchange between the A13 and the M25 at junction 30 near Thurrock in Essex is being overhauled to reduce congestion and improve safety. The A13 on approach to the junction is being widened to four lanes in each direction, and the junction itself will be improved, with new dedicated link roads between the M25 and the A13. The work is due to be completed in autumn 2016.
Highways England project manager Lizzie Pauling said:
“Safety is Highways England’s top priority. We are concerned by the number of drivers choosing to ignore closures and putting their safety and the safety of others at risk. The improvements to the A13 and M25 will improve safety and reduce congestion for the tens of thousands of drivers who use this section each day.”
During 2015 a range of vehicles were seen driving into the worksite or ignoring carriageway closures. In June, an item was thrown from a moving vehicle on the A13 which hit and damaged one of the road worker’s vehicles.
Highways England is working with the industry and road users to reduce the risks of working on the roads.
For the safety of road workers and all road users, when you are approaching roadworks:
- keep within the speed limit – it is there for your safety.
- get into the correct lane in good time – don’t keep switching.
- concentrate on the road ahead, not the roadworks.
- be alert for works’ traffic leaving or entering roadworks.
- keep a safe distance – there could be queues in front.
- observe all signs – they are there to help you.
- and be alert for road workers, the roads are their workplace.
Members of the public should contact the Highways England customer contact centre on 0300 123 5000.
Journalists should contact the Highways England press office on 0844 693 1448 and use the menu to speak to the most appropriate press officer.