Ex traffic police call for two lanes on NDR roundabouts

Overturned lorry on the NDR Salhouse Rd roundabout. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN

Overturned lorry on the NDR Salhouse Rd roundabout. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN - Credit: Archant

Two former road traffic police have prepared a document as part of a bid to reduce the number of crashes on Norwich's  Northern Distributor Road (NDR).

New police figures have revealed there have been 61 crashes which resulted in injury or fatalities since the road, also known as the Broadland Northway, completely opened in April 2018.

Of those , one was a fatality - the death of 49-year-old David Powell, from Attleborough.

Overturned lorry on the NDR Salhouse Rd roundabout. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN

Overturned lorry on the NDR Salhouse Rd roundabout. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN - Credit: Archant

Mel Lacey and Pete Boddy have compiled a document which they have circulated to parish councils, including Rackheath, outlining some of the problems as well as potential remedies.

It is hoped the document will be shared with other parish councils as well as Norfolk County Council.

Mel Lacey spotted a car driving on the wrong side of the A47. Photo: Paul Hewitt

File picture of Mel Lacey. - Credit: Archant

Mr Lacey said: "In our opinion, there are a number of modifications that can be made by Norfolk County Council.

"We strongly recommend a series of transverse white or yellow lines being painted across the carriageway on the approach to all roundabouts. 

"The gaps between the lines should gradually decrease. This will give drivers the impression their vehicle needs to slow even more. 

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"The word ‘SLOW’ should be painted on all lanes preceding the transverse lines."  

Car on its roof on Northern Distributor Road (NDR) following crash on December 23 2020

Car on its roof on Northern Distributor Road (NDR) following crash on Wednesday, December 23 2020. PIC: Submitted. - Credit: submitted

Mr Boddy said: "Quite frankly, three lanes on the roundabouts confuse many drivers and this confusion often leads to collisions. 

"The lanes need to be reassessed and, in my opinion, reduced to two.

"It is very easy to blame poor driving, but all the drivers who use the NDR must surely drive elsewhere? And where else in Norfolk do we see this level of collisions?"


Overturned lorry on the NDR Salhouse Rd roundabout. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN

Overturned lorry on the NDR Salhouse Rd roundabout. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN - Credit: Archant

A Norfolk County Council spokesman, said: “The Broadland Northway has been subject to safety audits during its development and post construction.

"This is a process carried out by qualified road safety auditors to national guidelines and has resulted in safety improvements to the scheme both through the design process and post construction.

"Improvements include revised road markings, additional countdown markers and signage, get in lane signs, and extra SLOW markings on roundabout approaches. 

"Over the past year, we have seen a falling trend in personal injury accidents which will be partly due to the reduced level of traffic relating to Covid-19 restrictions.”

Overturned lorry on the NDR Salhouse Rd roundabout. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN

Overturned lorry on the NDR Salhouse Rd roundabout. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN - Credit: Archant

The data, obtained following a Freedom of Information (FoI) Act request to Norfolk Constabulary by Mr Boddy, also showed nine of the 61 crashes resulted in serious injuries.

There were slight injuries in 51 of the crashes.

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