Council wants urgent talks over swing bridge traffic problems

Warrington Guardian: The opening of the swing bridges cause traffic chaos for motorists The opening of the swing bridges cause traffic chaos for motorists

LEADERS at Warrington Borough Council have called for urgent talks with Peel Ports to try and minimise the increasing frequency of the swing bridges on the Manchester Ship Canal.

It follows the launch of a campaign by the Warrington Guardian last week to stop the bridges swinging at rush hour.

A spokesman said: “The Manchester Ship Canal Act of 1885 gives Peel Ports a lot of power. But things have changed a great deal since 1885 and Peel need to acknowledge this.

“If they don't, they could cause avoidable traffic problems in and around Warrington.

“They could cause increasing annoyance to residents, businesses, visitors and through-traffic and they could risk harming our local economy.

“Peel need to understand that with power comes responsibility. If they operate their bridges in a purely self-interested way, if they don't take into account other people's needs, they'll cause problems.”

The council have named a number of options, which, they believe, could help alleviate the problem.

This includes providing advanced warnings of planned shipping movements to stakeholders through the use of an early warning system.

This information could also be published on the internet and on social media as well as via text messaging and mobile phone apps.

Other options include looking at modernising the bridges so that they swing faster and using swing bridge signs to inform the travelling public about the status of the bridge.

The council also plans to work with Peel Ports to increase the proportion of sailings during the off-peak and night-time periods.

The spokesman added: “The council believes this can be achieved by planning vessel movements in such a way that the proportion of vessels passing through the swing bridges at Warrington during the peak period remains at or below 150 per year.

“This would be 20 per cent of the current 750 vessel movements a year, and the council wants this percentage reduced to 15 per cent over the next 5 years.”

Peel Ports have so far refused to agree to this.

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Comments (6)

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6:02pm Tue 28 Jan 14

Nick Tessla says...

A "spokesman" - is he afraid to be named.

Judging by the quote"...with power comes responsibility..." I assume that it's Spider-man's Uncle Ben.
A "spokesman" - is he afraid to be named. Judging by the quote"...with power comes responsibility..." I assume that it's Spider-man's Uncle Ben. Nick Tessla

7:39pm Tue 28 Jan 14

grey-area says...

Is this more talks after the last talks? Let's have a survey and series of meetings (during the working day as usual) about the meetings.
Can't you just see this is going nowhere.
Peels will do what they will do. WBC can't even enforce no further tipping at Arpley and the licence has allegedly expired, so what chance here?
Is this more talks after the last talks? Let's have a survey and series of meetings (during the working day as usual) about the meetings. Can't you just see this is going nowhere. Peels will do what they will do. WBC can't even enforce no further tipping at Arpley and the licence has allegedly expired, so what chance here? grey-area

8:21pm Tue 28 Jan 14

vjones says...

So the council wants urgent talks about traffic issues when they are going to introduce toll bridges maybe they should talk to the government at same time and sort both impending traffic nightmare for all the town also maybe include the planning commity at the same time how many homes have been built in lachford and nearby areas
So the council wants urgent talks about traffic issues when they are going to introduce toll bridges maybe they should talk to the government at same time and sort both impending traffic nightmare for all the town also maybe include the planning commity at the same time how many homes have been built in lachford and nearby areas vjones

7:54am Wed 29 Jan 14

PageA says...

WG, show your council spokesperson the photograph of the Atlantic Gateway board of directors and ask why there's a need for these urgent talks. Was it really a surprise to them?
WG, show your council spokesperson the photograph of the Atlantic Gateway board of directors and ask why there's a need for these urgent talks. Was it really a surprise to them? PageA

8:56am Wed 29 Jan 14

Freeborn John says...

Why has the council (and the local media) kept its head down until now, the point at which, unfortunately, it appears to be game, set and match to Peel Ports?
You'd think Port Salford just sprang out of the ground last week to hear them talk, this is far from the case, the issue should have been raised years ago when WBC, perhaps, could have had more to say in the matter, instead of choosing to keep quiet and act daft...
Why has the council (and the local media) kept its head down until now, the point at which, unfortunately, it appears to be game, set and match to Peel Ports? You'd think Port Salford just sprang out of the ground last week to hear them talk, this is far from the case, the issue should have been raised years ago when WBC, perhaps, could have had more to say in the matter, instead of choosing to keep quiet and act daft... Freeborn John

11:16pm Wed 29 Jan 14

SAC_in_Warrington says...

grey-area wrote:
Is this more talks after the last talks? Let's have a survey and series of meetings (during the working day as usual) about the meetings.
Can't you just see this is going nowhere.
Peels will do what they will do. WBC can't even enforce no further tipping at Arpley and the licence has allegedly expired, so what chance here?
Absolutely true grey-area and I agree with your factual comment. Peel Holdings have ALL the power in this issue and their prime aim is to make money the ships have to be in and out of port as soon as they can be, not waiting around costing money. The protesters need to remember that the majority of Warrington residents, employers and other services are not concerned if the bridges swinging or not and seems to have very little or no effect on them.
[quote][p][bold]grey-area[/bold] wrote: Is this more talks after the last talks? Let's have a survey and series of meetings (during the working day as usual) about the meetings. Can't you just see this is going nowhere. Peels will do what they will do. WBC can't even enforce no further tipping at Arpley and the licence has allegedly expired, so what chance here?[/p][/quote]Absolutely true grey-area and I agree with your factual comment. Peel Holdings have ALL the power in this issue and their prime aim is to make money the ships have to be in and out of port as soon as they can be, not waiting around costing money. The protesters need to remember that the majority of Warrington residents, employers and other services are not concerned if the bridges swinging or not and seems to have very little or no effect on them. SAC_in_Warrington

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