ONE of the biggest ever campaigns to slow Wigan motorists down to less deadly speeds is to be launched.
Saving children’s lives is uppermost in the thoughts of council leaders as they look to extend the successful 20mph zones that now surround borough primary schools to take in residential streets too.
The Council’s leader Lord Smith confirmed the plans as part of his “State of the Borough” statement at the latest Full Council meeting.
He said the move had been prompted by colleagues voicing concern about safety on local streets, the success of the school zones and statistics showing much higher accident survival rates when vehicles are travelling at lower rates.
Cabinet member with responsibility for road safety Coun Kevin Anderson said that it wouldn’t be possible to do all the streets at once, but said the council would introduce 20mph zones in those residential streets with the worst accident records first.
He said: “We will consult with local residents about additional traffic calming measures and work with the police on the implementation.
“We look forward to a big reduction in the number of families who have to cope with the tragedy of a road traffic accident for one of their children.”
Leader of the Opposition Coun Gary Wilkes (Independents) said that he agreed with the principle of introducing measures to slow traffic down, but accused the council of double standards in applying them.
He said: “I do feel the council are saying one thing and doing another when it comes to road safety.
“We have just seen the borough’s area traffic engineers being cut yet again by the Labour Group, what we have is the same old wine but in new bottles, saying one thing and doing another.
“We need to ensure these zones are properly policed and enforced as I do not know of any driver being fined for exceeding the 20mph speed limit!”
Road safety charities say that reducing traffic speeds on our streets is the single biggest measure
May election candidates in Leigh South Ward; Kevin Anderson (Lab); Gary Chadwick (Independent); Richard Short (Con).