Plea for lights to be fixed at 'dangerous' junction

PUBLISHED: 12:00 10 July 2015

Villagers fear an accident will happen unless the traffic lights at Downside are switched on soon.

Villagers fear an accident will happen unless the traffic lights at Downside are switched on soon.

Archant

Concerned villagers in Downside near Backwell are appealing for the traffic lights to be turned on at a busy junction before somebody gets hurt.

The pedestrian bridge at Downside was taken down in March so traffic lights could be installed to cope with the increase in traffic due to Bristol Airport’s expansion.

Although the work was carried out four months ago, the lights were only put in a few days ago and then turned off 24 hours later due to a sequencing issue.

People are greatly concerned for their safety as the footbridge has been removed and there is now nowhere they can cross safely.

Jackie Churchill, from Downside, said: “The bridge was taken down in March but it was only last Wednesday (June 24) when they put traffic lights in.

“They had turned them off again by Friday because they were only letting two cars out at a time.

“It’s very dangerous and there’s going to be an accident there because people are turning right when they shouldn’t be.

“The bridge was for people to cross the road to get to the village hall and the church, but now there’s nowhere safe to cross.

“I’ve reported it, but it’s been a week and still nobody has been out to have a look at it.

“We are just helpless.”

The work at the junction is part of a £1.1million highway improvement project being funded by the airport.

Traffic lights were installed with a banned right turn into Downside Road and a new dedicated left turn into the road from the north of the A38.

The footbridge was removed as the traffic lights will include a pedestrian phase.

Jacqui Mills, spokesman for Bristol Airport, said: “Work was completed last month, but went live on a day when traffic levels were approximately 25 per cent higher than a typical Friday.

“Because of the resulting impact on traffic on the A38, further traffic monitoring has been undertaken this weekend with a view to ensuring that the new system works effectively for all road users.”

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