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A39 closure at Dragon's Cross causing chaos for road users in Somerset

Last updated:

    Work starts on the A39 at Dragon's Cross near Bilbook
  • It will last for three weeks
  • Road out of use for vehicles between 9am and 3.30pm
  • Traffic lights at Dunster causing major delays

Comments


Bryan Leaker MBE 3:07pm Mon 4 Nov 13

Monday came and so did pandemonium 1.5 hours from the sea front to Dunster traffic lights, all because Somerset County Council "cannot Run a Bath"

When the council responded to long delays, they stated they were unaware Butlins was open!, why did they not check, queues stretched from Minehead all the way to Washford, locals tried via Watchet to find blockages there also, there needs to be asked questions of an inept county council, committed to cuts, not committed to service;

1 Why did they not plan the work at night?

2 Why did they not introduce a one way loop system vis toward Bridgwater, Taunton, via Carhampton, Blue Anchor and either Old Cleeve rejoining the A39 at Washford and routing inbound to Minehead via Raleighs Cross, Timberscombe and Dunster as an example?

3 Why not plan the work for January when Butlins is closed for 3 weeks and traffic would have been at its lightest?

4 West Somerset residents travelling into Minehead told me there were inadequate signage first thing they did not have the diversion signs in place in many areas before 09-30am

5 There is an agreement between Avon and Somerset Police and Highways as reported in the Free Press circa 1 month ago that in the event of a major incident they would introduce the loop system, this having been formalised was an ideal opportunity to implement and avoid mayhem which has ensued.

Its always a problem that costs have to be cut but when will we receive a quality service, the Highways Authority should plan to manage issues such as this, but no their poorly thought out plans demonstrate there inability to "Run a Bath" never lone plan with the community, tourism and business in mind.


Bryan Leaker

Score: 0
Dr Dave 6:46pm Mon 4 Nov 13

Perhaps those voicing their opinions would like to orchestrate the [essential] works themselves - we'll see how well you get on. There isn't an ideal way of carrying out these works, you can't please everybody.

Score: 0
FreeSpeech? 7:11pm Mon 4 Nov 13

Dr Dave wrote…


Perhaps those voicing their opinions would like to orchestrate the [essential] works themselves - we'll see how well you get on. There isn't an ideal way of carrying out these works, you can't please everybody.

Ever heard of the saying "Couldn't organise a p*ss up in a brewery". Well that's how you describe the the councils of this country operate.

Score: 0
Samej1 8:03pm Mon 4 Nov 13

Dr Dave wrote…


Perhaps those voicing their opinions would like to orchestrate the [essential] works themselves - we'll see how well you get on. There isn't an ideal way of carrying out these works, you can't please everybody.

Well I couldn't have done any worse so quite happy to give it a go....

Score: 0
Bubblesbonbon 11:07am Tue 5 Nov 13

Absolute nightmare in Watchet yesterday. Three refuse lorries and a number 28 bus had locked horns at the single file pinch point at the top of West Street. The main street was very dangerous for walkers due to cars and particularly SUV's mounting the pavement in order to pass.
I emailed Mr Liddell-Grainer two weeks ago suggesting that he have a chat with SCC to try and get some intelligent thought into the problem.
As usual not a peep back - I get more response from my garden gnome.

Score: 0
deanrc 2:45pm Tue 5 Nov 13

Age old story - forgotten West Somerset when it comes to investment. A bit of long needed drainage work which hasn't been planned with the best interests of those using that stretch of the A39 and non-realisation of any suitable alternative route. All this a week after work begins on the £22m relief road in Taunton! For years there has been a heavy bias to improving Taunton and South Somerset roads while West Somerset remains with 'A' roads fit for a horse and cart.

Score: 0
deanrc 2:50pm Tue 5 Nov 13

Bubblesbonbon wrote…


Absolute nightmare in Watchet yesterday. Three refuse lorries and a number 28 bus had locked horns at the single file pinch point at the top of West Street. The main street was very dangerous for walkers due to cars and particularly SUV's mounting the pavement in order to pass.
I emailed Mr Liddell-Grainer two weeks ago suggesting that he have a chat with SCC to try and get some intelligent thought into the problem.
As usual not a peep back - I get more response from my garden gnome.

Mr Liddell Grainger never replies to correspondence. He wouldn't want anything to do with a 'closure' only an 'opening' where he can get his face in the press. Last week he turned up to a jam jar opening. Not fit to lace Lord (Tom) King's boots!

Score: 0
littlemisstidy 12:41pm Wed 6 Nov 13

deanrc wrote…


Age old story - forgotten West Somerset when it comes to investment. A bit of long needed drainage work which hasn't been planned with the best interests of those using that stretch of the A39 and non-realisation of any suitable alternative route. All this a week after work begins on the £22m relief road in Taunton! For years there has been a heavy bias to improving Taunton and South Somerset roads while West Somerset remains with 'A' roads fit for a horse and cart.

The A39 from Williton to Dunster is a dangerous road at the best of times with no proper attention from SCC given towards improving safety.
If the Highway Agency were doing their job as they should be, they could start by making it clear that using rat-runs wide enough for one vehicle, are not a good idea and further add to the problems.
And if many of the drivers who are coming through 30mph routes were to be a bit more respectful and slow down this too would help the situation.

Score: 0
sfj642 11:25pm Thu 7 Nov 13

Dr Dave wrote…


Perhaps those voicing their opinions would like to orchestrate the [essential] works themselves - we'll see how well you get on. There isn't an ideal way of carrying out these works, you can't please everybody.

They play football and cricket under floodlights; there is no reason the work could not have been carried out at night with modern floodlighting systems.

These works are not essential any way - the road only floods there once in a blue moon and for only a few hours and not often in the middle of the day; last year was exceptional in that the road was closed for short periods.

Blue Anchor is bad enough, but please give a thought to the people of Watchet who are having to live through this debacle.

Score: 0
sfj642 11:34pm Thu 7 Nov 13

Bryan Leaker MBE wrote…


Monday came and so did pandemonium 1.5 hours from the sea front to Dunster traffic lights, all because Somerset County Council "cannot Run a Bath"

When the council responded to long delays, they stated they were unaware Butlins was open!, why did they not check, queues stretched from Minehead all the way to Washford, locals tried via Watchet to find blockages there also, there needs to be asked questions of an inept county council, committed to cuts, not committed to service;

1 Why did they not plan the work at night?

2 Why did they not introduce a one way loop system vis toward Bridgwater, Taunton, via Carhampton, Blue Anchor and either Old Cleeve rejoining the A39 at Washford and routing inbound to Minehead via Raleighs Cross, Timberscombe and Dunster as an example?

3 Why not plan the work for January when Butlins is closed for 3 weeks and traffic would have been at its lightest?

4 West Somerset residents travelling into Minehead told me there were inadequate signage first thing they did not have the diversion signs in place in many areas before 09-30am

5 There is an agreement between Avon and Somerset Police and Highways as reported in the Free Press circa 1 month ago that in the event of a major incident they would introduce the loop system, this having been formalised was an ideal opportunity to implement and avoid mayhem which has ensued.

Its always a problem that costs have to be cut but when will we receive a quality service, the Highways Authority should plan to manage issues such as this, but no their poorly thought out plans demonstrate there inability to "Run a Bath" never lone plan with the community, tourism and business in mind.


Bryan Leaker

According to the Highway Authority; "Butlins has been informed of the closure" - just informing them two weeks ahead when they are probably booked up a year in advance is pitiful.
I involved our County Councillor (Dunster) and presumably the Minehead County Councillor will also have been contacted. I have yet to hear what actions they took to soften matters for their constituents.

Score: 0
mansell5 11:35pm Sat 9 Nov 13

littlemisstidy wrote…


deanrc wrote…


Age old story - forgotten West Somerset when it comes to investment. A bit of long needed drainage work which hasn't been planned with the best interests of those using that stretch of the A39 and non-realisation of any suitable alternative route. All this a week after work begins on the £22m relief road in Taunton! For years there has been a heavy bias to improving Taunton and South Somerset roads while West Somerset remains with 'A' roads fit for a horse and cart.
The A39 from Williton to Dunster is a dangerous road at the best of times with no proper attention from SCC given towards improving safety.
If the Highway Agency were doing their job as they should be, they could start by making it clear that using rat-runs wide enough for one vehicle, are not a good idea and further add to the problems.
And if many of the drivers who are coming through 30mph routes were to be a bit more respectful and slow down this too would help the situation.

The Highways Agency deal with motorways and trunk roads, not the A39.

Score: 0

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