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Signs and texts not the answer
9:41am Thursday 17th May 2012 in Letters
IN reply to Mr Higham’s letter of April 19 may I say I am in total agreement with him.
My point was that when we first came to live in Warrington 49 years ago Manchester Ship Canal (as it then was) had electric signs in Latchford, warning of impending closures and allowing road users to take an alternative route. I went on to say that surely today there must be more high tech solutions. Peel Holdings needs to be much more radical in mitigating the effects of its proposed increase in bridge swings.
Peel’s senior management suggests signs explaining that the delay is due to bridge swings when you are sitting in traffic with nowhere to go at that stage, or sending SMS messages to mobile phones, so that drivers will stay and have another cup of coffee while waiting for the road to clear.
They have no idea of the congestion we already suffer, with an average one ship each day. Council highways officers have told them that it takes 45 to 60 minutes for the roads to return to normal after one swing.
The roads will never be ‘normal’ with Peel’s proposals to increase canal traffic fourfold. It currently sends 10,000 containers on barges per annum. Its intention is 100,000 or even 300,000 containers per annum so it would be a never-ending line of barges if Mr Higham’s suggestion is taken up.
We have suggested a tunnel or a new bridge. They are dismissed out-of-hand as not the responsibility of Peels. Our best solution, which is reasonably low cost, is to send the canal traffic at night. We await an answer.
CELIA JORDAN Borough and parish councillor for Stockton Heath