Death fear prompts plea over Sidmouth's "most dangerous" road

PUBLISHED: 15:50 10 October 2011 | UPDATED: 09:37 12 October 2011

SAFETY PLEA: Bowd Court residents hope Sidmouth and Ottery residents alike will support their petition for action.

SAFETY PLEA: Bowd Court residents hope Sidmouth and Ottery residents alike will support their petition for action.

'Fatality is a matter of time' warn 'terrified' residents

‘TERRIFIED’ residents fear it’s only a matter of time before someone is killed on Sidmouth’s “most dangerous” stretch of road - and have pleaded for action to be taken.

Concerned homeowners, turned campaigners, want highways bosses to consider safety measures at the Bowd, including a roundabout, after two accidents there in six days.

“Something has to be done otherwise there’s going to be a fatality,” they told the Herald.

A group of Bowd Court householders hope people from all over Sidmouth will sign a petition calling for a road layout re-think.

They fear the opening of a Sainsbury’s store in Ottery St Mary next week, and a new state-of-the-art recycling centre near the Bowd in the future, will exacerbate existing traffic problems. Joan Lister, a Bowd Court resident of 10 years, said: “It’s madness out there. The build up of traffic is horrendous. It’s just so frightening.

“People come thundering down - a couple of us have nearly been wiped out.

“You take your life into your own hands pulling out into the road. It’s the most dangerous spot in Sidmouth.”

Three children were taken to hospital, one by air ambulance, along with a female driver and an elderly motorist following a two-car collision at the Bowd at 9am last Tuesday.

On Saturday, a man was treated at the scene by paramedics after a motorcycle and car collided at 1.15pm.

Residents say faded road markings on turn-offs run the risk of cars being involved in a head-on smash, and that drivers regularly flout the speed limit.

They branded the spot, where six lanes converge, as “terrifying” and “an absolute nightmare”.

Sidmouth councillor Stuart Hughes, Devon’s highways and transportation chief, said he’d be happy to discuss residents’ concerns with them.

He added safety improvements had been carried out at the Bowd over the years and the cause of accidents needed to be ascertained before a course of action was considered.

“it doesn’t happen over night,” said Cllr Hughes.

He added road markings were due to be replaced this week as part of resurfacing work on the A3052.

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