East Sussex’s six road safety priority sites revealed

Traffic on the A259 Buckle By-Pass where it becomes Newhaven Road with Hill Rise and Marine Parade joining it and Bishopstone Road in the distance also joining.
Traffic on the A259 Buckle By-Pass where it becomes Newhaven Road with Hill Rise and Marine Parade joining it and Bishopstone Road in the distance also joining.

Six priority sites needing action to improve road safety across East Sussex have been revealed.

East Sussex County Council is set to make £125,000 of Public Health Grant Funding available for several projects to reduce the speed of traffic.

The three-year crash data revealed that the highest priority is the A259 Buckle bypass near Bishopstone between Seaford and Newhaven where there was one fatal, four serious and ten slight crashes.

A proposed 50mph speed limit would be imposed between the existing 30mph limit at Seaford and the Bishopstone Road junction.

Work would include some safety improvements on the more rural part of the read between Bishopstone Road and the Denton roundabout.

ESCC’s lead member for transport and the environment is due to approve £20,000 towards lowering the speed limit on the bypass, along with funding for five other locations next Monday.

Money will also be spent on improvements at Ringles Cross near Uckfield, near Wivelsfield, at Blackham, near Battle, and between Herstmounceux and Magham Down.

While the A267 at Argos Hill had the same casualty rating as other priorities, the speed survey showed that a 40mph limit would require more expensive measures on the straighter part of the road to slow down traffic.

Since the preliminary cost estimates indicate that lowering the entire length’s speed limit was £80,000 the county council is proposing that a final decision be taken when the total costs of the other priorities has been fully established and a more funding becomes available.

The priority list has been agreed with Sussex Police.

In the rest of the county a 50mph speed limit is proposed on the A271 between Magham Down and Herstmonceux and improved signage at Coopers Croft.

The speed survey results showed that the average speed of traffic was higher between Magham Down and the Coopers Croft junction where the majority of the crashes have occurred.

A reduction in the speed limit is also proposed on the B2112 Ditchling Road near Wivelsfield between the junction with Janes Lane and the existing 30mph limit in Wivelsfield. Since the stretch south of Janes Lane is too rural in nature the officers’ report states it was agreed to keep the existing limit there.

Three of the priorities involve safer route studies. These would be carried out for Powdermill Lane near Battle, the A264 at Blackham, and the C33 at Ringles Cross.

While the speed survey results suggested the need for a 50mph limit on the straighter parts of Powdermill Lane a meeting between the county council and police agreed that it would be set too high for the sharp bends in the road where the majority of the crashes have happened.

It was therefore agreed to combine a local safety scheme with a safer route study for the rest of Powdermill Lane.

It was also agreed that the short length of road between Ringles Cross and Uckfield could not support a 30mph speed limit as they could not install 30mph repeater signs as there was already a system of street lights along the road.

The report reads, “We would therefore need to provide expensive engineering measures on this part of the road to ensure compliance with the lower limit.

“This could not be justified as there have not been any crashes recorded on this section of road.

“It was therefore agreed that it would be most appropriate to carry out a Local Safety Scheme on the C33 at Ringles Cross near the Snatts Green and Coopers Green Road junctions to address the crashes that have occurred here.”

Speed limits are already being reduced at other locations including on the A26 at Heron’s Ghyll, Poundgate and Five Ash Down, and on the A272 between Scaynes Hill and North Chailey.

What do you think of road safety in your area? Do you think speed limits should be lowered? Leave a comment on our website, Twitter or Facebook pages, or email joshua.powling@jpress.co.uk

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