Residents on main route into Keynsham call for cut in speed limit

August 09 2014

Traffic chiefs have pledged to put forward a proposal to extend the town’s 20mph zone further along the busy Wellsway, following pleas from residents.

Traffic chiefs have pledged to put forward a proposal to extend the town’s 20mph zone further along the busy Wellsway, following pleas from residents.

Neighbours living on the road in the 30mph and 40mph zones say some residents have been asking for the speed limit to be reduced for more than 20 years.

Since the rest of the town became a 20mph zone, however, they say an increase in overtaking by “frustrated” drivers as they reach the faster stretch of road has made crossing the road and turning into their own driveways dangerous.

One resident said: “All four members of our family have had the awful experience of waiting to turn into our drive, indicator on, when suddenly we have
been overtaken by a lunatic who does not have the decency to wait for us while we await a gap in the oncoming traffic.” She added: “It is a beautiful road, and I’m sure residents accept it is a busy road, in the same way we do.

“However, it is after all a residential road, complete with children, the elderly and the infirm all trying to sometimes cross from one side to the other.

“Why are we then not afforded the same considerations as other residents – ie a reduction in speed limits outside our homes? I’m sure we would all settle for 30mph even though other main routes into our town are now 20mph.”

Now residents’ latest appeal to the council has won the backing of local councillors, who said they were asking highways officers to work with residents to address the problem.

Councillor Marie Longstaff (Cons, Keynsham East) said: “Dangerous speeding along the Wellsway has been a real problem and a major concern for local residents for many years, and on that part of the road it has actually been exacerbated by the 20mph limit because drivers speed up as soon as they leave the 20 zone.

“We would like to see further measures introduced to try and calm traffic entering and leaving Keynsham on the Wellsway.  Extending the 20mph limit further out would be one option, or reducing the 40mph limit to 30mph, together with better warning signs or flashing speed signs. 

“Key to any measure, though, is enforcement.  The use of speed guns which send warning letters to drivers could also help at this location.”

Councillor Bryan Organ (Cons, Keynsham East) added: “Personally, I think that the multiple different speed limits along the Wellsway make it confusing and add to the problem. So personally I would like to see a simplified single 30mph speed limit for the length of the Wellsway which can then be more easily enforced.”

A council spokesman said the council was making good progress on implementing approved 20mph zones across the district.

He added: “These schemes are proving popular and have resulted in increased requests for 20mph zones from local communities.

“The council’s Traffic and Safety Team has received a request from a Keynsham resident about extending the 20mph limit to this stretch of the Wellsway Road, and will be putting forward the suggestion to the cabinet for consideration as part of schemes proposed for the next financial year.”