A39 closure at Dragon's Cross causing chaos for road users in Somerset (From Somerset County Gazette)
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A39 closure at Dragon's Cross causing chaos for road users in Somerset
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- 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
SOMERSET County Council has said it will be monitoring the road works on a daily basis.
BUS services are still operating while the road works are taking place.
Webber Buses are running a smaller service via Blue Anchor and First Buses are running a free shuttle bus operating between the West Somerset Railway Stations in Washford and Watchet.
Normal service will operate when the road is open.
John Simms who works for West Somerset Railway said he had trouble getting into work this morning.
He said:"I presented myself at Taunton Bus Station for the 7.05 to Minehead which arrived from Minehead as a large bus with the driver due to swap to the smaller one.
"Alas the “replacement” vehicle would not start. There appeared to be no-one in the control office, the waiting room was locked and by the time another “replacement” had been obtained the departure was at 7.31, nicely timed to get into the roadworks at Taunton railway station just as the town got busy.
"So people were late for work, as were students going to college and other users. I sat contemplating the sign saying “Enjoy Travelling First” and wondering if such a feat is possible. At least most of the “We believe there should always be a bus when you need one” posters have been taken down."
@GazetteDMorris school run wasn't to bad this morning, but am not looking forward to picking daughter up. seen 2 different times of closures— @vj71 04 November 2013
WRITING on Facebook, Rebecca Dean said: "My mum drives my sister to Watchet to catch her bus to Cannington as it doesn't go from Minehead needless to say she missed her bus so my mum had to drive her (nearly missing her hospital appointment) and my sister was late to college as was held up for an hour between Minehead and watchet."
Candice Hodgkins added: "It's shocking and very unorganised! Even though diversions are in place there seems to be roadworks everywhere, Dunster is chaos due to scaffolding at the Luttrell with no traffic lights there. You have Butlin's traffic, school traffic, work traffic...disgusting. There's no way they can keep this up for 4 weeks!"
Will Rayner said: "To start these roadworks on the main arterial on a Monday after a weekend break at Butlin's shows the complete lack of planning by Highways department. Apparently they're not being done at night because of too many services in middle of the road?"
SOMERSET County Council have supplied the follwing information regarding diversion routes:
Phase 1 alternative route for vehicles under 18 Tonnes and 31’ 2” (9.5m) in length.
From the eastern end of the closure proceed in an easterly direction along the A39 to the junction with the B3190.
Turn right and proceed in a south westerly direction along the B3190 to the junction withm the B3224.
Turn right and proceed in a north westerly direction along the B3224 to the junction with Stone Lane to Heathpoult Cross.
Turn right and proceed in a southerly direction along Stone Lane to Heathpoult Cross, Vinnecombe Straight, Combeshead Cross to Stoford Hill, White Post Cross to Combeshead Cross, Lyddons Cross to White Post Cross, Louisa Gate to Lyddons Cross and Bury Hill to the junction with the A396.
Turn right and proceed in a north easterly direction along the A396 to the junction with the A39.
Turn right and proceed in a south easterly direction along the A396 to the western end of the closure and vice versa.
Vehicles in excess of 18 Tonnes and 31’ 2” (9.5m) in length will be suitably signed on site.
From the northern end of the closure proceed in north easterly and south easterly directions along the A39 to the junction with Abbey Road.
Turn right and proceed in a southerly direction along Abbey Road to the junction with Roadwater to White Horse Pub.
Turn right and proceed in a south westerly direction along Roadwater to White Horse Pub to the junction with Battalers Lane.
Turn right and proceed in a northerly direction along Battalers Lane and Lodge rocks to the southern end of the closure and vice versa.
MAP showing diversion routes which has been described as 'confusing'. IMAGE: Somerset County Council.
Seems the closure on the A39 is causing quite a bit of chaos with traffic backed up to Minehead seafront earlier. #irratepeople— @Smoogylady 04 November 2013
Already, people have reported missing appointments and buses.
Writing on Facebook, Smee Conway said: "Queues backing up from Carhampton towards Minehead this morning. Even worse if you divert through Dunster with the traffic lights creating major delays. I missed my appointment in Watchet, who do I address for compensation on loss of earnings?"
Cllr Gary Miele said: "As predicted it has not got off to a good start, really think highways need to rethink their plans."
@GazetteDMorris not gone that way, but tuesdays usual shopping trip will have to be Taunton instead of Minehead tomorrow..— @CiderSi 04 November 2013
For information about the works being carried out contact Alan Rawle on 0845-345-9155.
For further details of the alternative route please contact Somerset County Council on 0845-345-9155.
ROAD works at a notorious flood spot at the Dragon's Cross in Bilbrook started at 9am this morning to allow Somerset Highways to carry out drainage on the road.
The site flooded several times last winter resulting in an emergency closure of the road.
The work is taking place for three weeks and means that the A39 from Minehead to Williton is out of use for vehichles between 9am and 3.30pm on weekdays.
Somerset County Council released a statement saying work will be carried out in two phases.
Phase one is the A39 Minehead to Williton Road and Dragons Cross to Old Cleeve and is expected to last for three weeks.
Phase two is Lodge Rocks which is due to commence on November 25 and is expected to last for two weeks.
Although diversions are in place for cars and light vehicles between Wahford Cross, Dunster and Minehead, road users have reported major delays and traffic cues as people try to figure out how to get around the road works.
RT @MieleG: Lots of u-turns being made on A39 along with long traffic cues as peple try to figure out how to get around road works— @katws 04 November 2013
Vehicles over 18 tonnes or 9.5m in length cannot use the alternative routes and will only be allowed through the closed-off section at 11am and 1.30pm.
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