Michael Fabricant says “The problems of heavy trucks making life a misery for residents is not getting any better.
“Through a combination of sat navs finding rat runs and truckers communicating on social media, wholly inappropriate local roads are now being used by heavy and long trucks more suited to straight trunk roads with dual carriageways.”
On Saturday 15th October, Michael attended a village meeting in Tatenhill where residents complained of trucks using village lanes and mounting the pavement. “But it is not just Tatenhill” says Michael. “Heavy trucks continue to rumble through Yoxall and Kings Bromley and when the A38 is closed, and even the centre of Lichfield is used despite alternative by-passes being available.
“And now I am receiving complaints from residents in Fradley due to diversions arising from the Prologis development on Fradley Business Park. The highway works for the development involve making improvements to the Hilliards Cross junction which has required the closure of the A38 northbound exit slip. But trucks are not taking the official diversion and I have taken this up with the County.”
In a letter to Michael Fabricant, Tim Heminsley of County Highways says: “The diversion route is correctly signed but the contractors are looking to install an additional sign on the A38 northbound approach using a symbol format to warn drivers who might not read English well.
“Neither the Council nor the police can prevent drivers from choosing to ignore a diversion route. There is already signage which states ‘Follow diversion not Satnav’ but all vehicles have a right to pass and repass unless there is a traffic restriction in place. Fradley Lane has a permanent 7.5T weight restriction on it which covers the Fradley village area and Common Lane. HGVs should not be using this route unless they have a legitimate reason for access and the police have agreed to monitor the situation.
“Staffordshire Safer Roads Partnership will introduce a Speed Indicator Device trailer in the area to remind drivers of the speed limit and also capture speed data.
“If there is a significant issue with speeding the Partnership will look at getting a mobile camera enforcement van in place to catch offenders.
“The Council is aware of longstanding concerns in relation to traffic around St Stephen’s Primary School and we are working with the school to coordinate with parents on other potential parking and walking options such as the Walking Bus initiative. The Council will also consider the provision of a school crossing patrol once the diversion has finished, however, we do not have resources available for a temporary crossing patrol.”
Michael responds by saying: “I appreciate the work the County are doing to mitigate problems around Fradley, but this is a temporary issue until the Prologis site work is completed.
“However, I will continue to press the County regarding other black spots in the Lichfield constituency.
“The Government has devolved responsibility for weight restrictions to the County and I see no reason why 7.5T limits cannot be imposed and enforced in Tatenhill, Yoxall, Kings Bromley and Lichfield itself – apart from deliveries to within those areas – as by-pass routes are already available. This is not a temporary phenomenon for them.
“Heavy trucks are a daily and nightly misery for residents.”