Road markings add safety boost at busy Wigan crossroads

Borough councillors have hailed a small victory in a long-running campaign to make a notoriously dangerous junction safer.

Wednesday, 29th August 2018, 9:21 am
Updated Wednesday, 29th August 2018, 10:51 am
New road markings at junction into Standish

For years, fears have been voiced about the potential for fatal traffic accidents at the junction of High Street, Preston Road, Market Street and School Lane in Standish.

The area has become notorious in recent years as one of the borough’s most congested areas at peak times, and the crossroads have also been a prominent point of several road traffic collisions.

Standish with Langtree councillor George Fairhurst has frequently met with police and council bosses to find a permanent way to reduce the dangers to pedestrians and other road users.

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Despite there being a traffic light filter system in operation, Coun Fairhurst claims to have witnessed scores of cars driving through red lights, resulting in several near-misses.

He believes drivers are attempting to “dart through” as the traffic lights change from amber to red.

Following the multiple campaigns, Coun Fairhurst’s fellow ward representative Ray Whittingham has welcomed a council decision to install clear road signs at all four junctions, in a bid to keep traffic flowing smoothly and avoid accidents.

In a statement on social media, Coun Whittingham said: “For two years and three months I have been badgering the council for yellow box junctions.

“Each time I asked, I would get a refusal but I wouldn’t let it be.”

Last week, the persistence paid off, with the town hall sending a team to paint several Keep Clear signs on each of roads leading up to the junction.

Coun Whittingham added: “Hopefully, this will encourage selfish drivers from blocking the junctions at peak times, and traffic joining the A49 will hopefully flow without frustration.”

Coun Fairhurst most recently met with council officials in July, to show them first hand how some motorists were flouting red lights and speed limits.

He said: “We saw people coming through on red lights for some time after they changed.

“We were there for a good amount of time. They agree with me about this, and they are going to do their best.

“We came up with a few different ideas, the main one being putting a box junction in. Whether that works or not we would have to wait and see.

He added: “Without changes though sooner or later, there is going to be one hell of a smash if something is not done.”