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Safety calls for notorious road

Dangerous: A crash on Blacker Lane from last year.
Dangerous: A crash on Blacker Lane from last year.

Residents are demanding safety measures are put in place on a “dangerous” stretch of road after 24 accidents were recorded in the past year.

More than 100 people turned up to a meeting on Monday evening about Blacker Lane in Netherton.

Inspector Helen Brear is back at the helm as the Inspector in charge of Wakefield Rural Neighbourhood Policing Team.

Inspector Helen Brear is back at the helm as the Inspector in charge of Wakefield Rural Neighbourhood Policing Team.

Held at Netherton Sports and Social Club, it was also attended by West Yorkshire Police’s Insp Helen Brear, Wakefield Council’s Highways , ward councillors and members of Sitlington Parish Council.

Organised and chaired by Netherton resident, Claire Aydogan, she said that over the years increasing calls have been made for improvements.

She says there have been issues with erratic drivers, the condition of the road surface and problems with the road width - particularly with HGVs using the route. She said residents have spent years trying to have safety measures installed, adding: “I was brought up in the village and this road has never got any better.

“I use it two or three times a day and it’s very, very dangerous.

“Some people are angry that we are here again and nothing has been done, but it looks like this time there could be some positive action.”

At the meeting it was agreed that a ‘Smiley Sid’ electronic speed warning sign will be used to warn drivers of their speed and the parish council to look into the cost of new signs.

Landowners will also be approached about cutting back hedges from the road, while Highways agreed to look at possible solutions.

Figures provided by the police suggest there had been one serious accident during the past 12 months, with seven minor crashes and 16 ‘damage-only’ incidents.

Ward councillor Kevin Barker said: “I’m not surprised by the amount of accidents. I think we need to get signs warning drivers that it is an accident black spot.”

Inspector Helen Brear said: “The main cause of these has proved to be driver error and behaviour, so clearly we share the concerns of residents.

“We are working to see what can be done in the long and short term, such as the use of ‘Smiley Sid’ signs and measures to influence driver behaviour. Officers will also carry out work to see if accidents have involved local drivers or not, to help us see if we can carry out some educational work.”