North Shropshire MP calls for accident data in A41 road safety campaign – Whitchurch Herald
THE MP for North Shropshire has called on parish councils to collect data on accidents on the A41 as part of a new initiative to improve road safety.
Owen Paterson met with parish councillors to launch the North Shropshire A41 Safety Campaign, which aims to reduce the number of accidents on the road.
Figures from Shropshire Council show that between 2008 and 2018 there were 200 accidents on the A41 between Whitchurch and Hinstock.
These accidents resulted in 300 casualties, including 10 fatalities.
The immediate goal of the campaign is to collect data on the section of road, so as to gather accurate information on the most dangerous spots.
According to Mr Paterson, this will involve every accident, but also every near miss and similar incidents.
Campaigners will then meet again later in the year to share their data and move forward from there
“We had a look at the Shropshire Council figures for 2008 to 2018 and as a result of that we know the road is busy and increasingly dangerous,” said Mr Paterson.
“The short-term aim is for immediate improvements to the road, with the long-term aim of getting the whole thing dualled.
“We want parish councils to start calculating data on every accident, every near miss – collecting all the data possible.
“On these roads the people most at risk are local residents. It’s overwhelmingly local postcodes that are involved in accidents.
“We plan to meet up again in mid December to discuss the findings.
Meanwhile, Rob Gittins, deputy portfolio holder for public health at Shropshire Council, was also backing the plans.
“Obviously, we regularly attend parish council meetings and safety concerns come up almost every meeting,” said Cllr Gittins. “Following a spate of accidents it’s time to ask what we can do.
“It’s time to start a campaign to make the A41 safer – we’re looking at more than 200 accidents in the last 10 years.
“The short-term plan is to introduce safety measures at some of the major blackspots along the road and the longer-term plan over the next 10 to 15 years is to try to get the A41 dualled from Whitchurch to the M54.
“The A41 as a road is a major trunk road and the increase in traffic has been phenomenal – now we’re looking at urgent action.
“After a couple of serious accidents we really need to act. We need to collect as much data as possible.”
Cllr Gittins added that the campaign requires people to tell their local parish council about any incidents they have seen or been involved in, adding “the more evidence the better”.