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Above: PCC John Campion with Herefordshire Ambassador Dan Guerche, Chris Blaydon and members of Herefordshire County Council and Monkland Parish Council

West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion has promised to support a Herefordshire village in tackling the issue of an accident black-spot to avoid further fatalities.

Residents of Monkland village, which lies on the busy A44, have expressed concerns over a particular section of the road and whether its speed limits are safe along the entire stretch of the 50mph zone. There have been a number of road traffic collisions along this section, including one fatality which cost the life of a young mother in June 2016. The parish council have been fighting for changes to no avail.

After concerns were raised by Monkland residents, the Commissioner called on partners and came together on Tuesday 17 January with Herefordshire County Council, Monkland Parish Council and West Mercia Safer Roads Partnership to find a way forward.

John said: “I made a promise that I would listen to the concerns of communities and be responsive to them. My support and investment in making this road safer is another example of how I’m delivering on that promise.

“I am committed to helping and I will do my part, but others need to as well and I will be looking to them to ensure that happens. We can’t wait for another fatality to happen before action is taken, something needs to be done now and I will help to achieve that.”

Chris Blaydon, a resident of Monkland, was first on the scene at the accident last summer: “There’s nothing like the noise of a car crash; we’ve heard a few in the four years we’ve been living next to the A44. On this particular day in June, my wife and I knew this was different. Grabbing our first aid kit, we ran to the bend to find the driver unconscious in the car and her two children in the back. We tried to help her, but it was too late.

“It’s time something effective was done to make this road safer, be it moving the 50 mph speed limit sign, alerting drivers to the dangerous bend ahead or introducing speed-activated signs. If Tanya and the other driver involved in the crash had been aware of the dangers of this bend, then perhaps a life could have been saved.”

A proposed scheme of solutions will be pulled together and put before Balfour Beatty, Herefordshire County Council’s official partner for highways, next month.

Issued on: Thursday 26th January