Almost £3 million has been awarded by the government to improve safety on a notorious stretch of the A18 after it was named one of the most dangerous roads in the country.
A joint bid by North East Lincolnshire Council and Lincolnshire County Council has secured £2.8 million from the Department for Transport’s Safer Roads Fund after changes to the road were proposed.
The money will see work, including road widening and speed reduction, carried out on the stretch of the A18 from the junction A46 near Laceby to the A16 junction near Ludborough after the Road Safety Foundation found it to be one of the fifty high risk ‘A’ roads in England.
Next week, North East Lincolnshire Council is set to approve plans to make itself the accountable body for the funds in order to carry out the works on the stretch of road, meaning the authority would be responsible for ensuring the improvements to the A18 are made.
The measures proposed come after HM Coroner, Mr Paul Kelly, issued a report into preventing future deaths on the A18 following an inquest into the deaths of five members of the Cockburn family in 2013.
Angela, 49, and David Cockburn, 48, their two daughters Carley Ann, 21, and Bethany, 18 and one-year-old granddaughter Lacie from County Durham died when the car they were in hit an oncoming lorry.
Following instructions from the coroner, a number of safety improvements have been drawn up by the council.
• Widening of the carriageway between Laceby roundabout and A18 / Waltham Road junction
• Provision of right turn lanes at the Oaklands Hotel and Golf Club entrances
• Upgrade of the A18/Waltham Road junction
• Localised traffic sign upgrades, road markings and surfacing works between Laceby roundabout and the A18/ B1203 junction
• Reduction of the speed limit to 50mph (to match the current 50mph on the NEL section)
• Vehicle Activated Signs (VAS)
• Installation of traffic islands at the Barton Street junction.
Councillor Richard Davies, executive member for highways at Lincolnshire County Council, said the reduction in casualties on the road will be significant after the works.
“Now that we’ve been successful in our joint funding bid, one of the improvements we’ll be making to our section of A18 is installing two traffic islands at its junction with Barton Street,” he said.
“We’ll also be installing vehicle-activated signs on our stretch of the A18, as well as bringing the speed limit down to 50mph to match the limit on the North East Lincolnshire section.
“These works are a result of this section of road being identified as an accident cluster site.
“When complete, these improvements will make travelling the A18 safer for all road users and will significantly reduce the number of collisions both here and in North East Lincolnshire.”