"Nowhere To Turn Around!" Complains Lorry Driver

B489 towards Dunstable
by Alan D Winter

A lorry driver who has asked to remain anonymous is frustrated by new signs on roads leading to Dunstable. 7.5T weight limit signs have appeared on the County boundary with Buckinghamshire on the B489 towards Dunstable, and on the B4506 at the foot of Whipsnade Zoo.

The driver who contacted Dunstable News Desk, said, "So I'm driving an articulated lorry along these roads. Where on earth am I supposed to turn around?"

At the time of checking these signs, there were no previous signs beforehand in Buckinghamshire, alerting lorry drivers to the weight restrictions ahead.

County boundary on B4506

We asked Central Bedfordshire Council to comment. A spokesperson said, "There are signs in place within the Hertfordshire and Buckinghamshire parts of the A5 to alert drivers to the weight limits further ahead of zone. In addition, our staff have been working with companies such as Amazon, Eddie Stobart, Tesco, and Asda to educate their drivers about the weight ban, and to encourage them to use the new A5-M1 and Woodside Link roads that both join the M1 at the new junction 11a. These roads were built to be more suitable for heavier lorries, and that also helps to encourage them to choose these more suitable roads instead."

The lorry driver had further concerns about M1 closures. He said, "The other night the M1 was closed overnight between J11A and J9. Traffic was diverted along the Woodside Link to turn left at the crossroads in Dunstable. Traffic was at a standstill on the industrial estate. It was all the more frustrating because I was trying to get to Skimpot, but I was held up in all this diverted traffic. If there wasn't a lorry ban on Poynters Road, I could have gone down there."

"And if the M1 traffic had been diverted along the new dual carriageway to Thorn, and turned left into Dunstable, I would have had less traffic to contend with on Woodside".

The driver didn't ask to be named, but he said he would be taking his complaints up with Central Bedfordshire Council.

On 24th January, CBC added a further response, "“The council has worked very closely with the neighbouring authorities, and the relevant signage has been installed to allow advance notice of the weight ban for lorries. We have also worked with the major haulage and logistics companies in the area so that their drivers were informed of the weight limit rules.

“When a major nearby road such as the M1 is closed due to circumstances beyond our control, it is inevitable that there will be heavier local traffic than normal. When the M1 is closed there are agreed diversion routes in place which allows lorries to pass through the area as part of the official diversion routes. However, this is only in place for these circumstances.”

Also on 24th January, Bucks County Council finally got back to us a wekk after asking them, with this response,
"Reference report number 46053183
Thank you for your report. We are already aware of this defect which has been added to our works programme. We will continue to update you by email when your report reaches key stages.
You may also track the progress of your report by using the Track It function.
http://transportforbucks.net/track-it.aspx  "