Grandfather's plea for safety measures on 'death trap' Blyth road

A man has claimed he refuses to let his grandchildren cross the ‘death trap’ road outside his house and called on councillors to act now before there is a fatal accident.

By James Robinson
Friday, 25th March 2022, 11:00 am
A petition has been launched calling for road safety measures on South Newsham Road, in Blyth.

Stuart Ferguson, who lives on South Newsham Road in Blyth, has been campaigning for over a decade to get traffic calming measures introduced.

Officers from Northumberland County Council were said to be shocked at the number of speeding drivers on the route.

Mr Ferguson organised a petition calling for measures to be introduced, and spoke at Wednesday’s meeting of Ashington and Blyth Local Area Council, where a report into the petition was presented to councillors.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Speaking at the meeting, he said: “This has been going on since 2011. This road is a death trap. From April 2021 there have been a number of accidents.

“It is an absolute nightmare. A council officer came out to do a speed survey and he was shocked at the speed people were driving at.

“We have a duty of care and responsibility. I will now allow my grandson to cross that road alone. Since September I’ve witnessed three near misses.”

It comes after the final train station on the Northumberland Line between Newcastle and Ashington was granted permission – on South Newsham Road.

Mr Ferguson added: “The road cannot cope with the volume of traffic, and there’s more developments being built as well as the station.

"I just really, really can’t say enough – we all should be taking this more seriously.”

A speed survey carried out by the council found that the highest speed recorded on the 30mph stretch of road was between 46-51 mph – recorded by 12 separate vehicles.

The report into the online petition, signed by 78 people, proposed carrying out a new survey as traffic flow has increased since 2019, while preliminary design work will also be carried out to identify appropriate “small scale” improvements.

The council will also continue to work with Northumbria Police’s Road Safety Unit to agree “enforcement action”.

Coun Cliff Humphrey, who represents the Newsham ward, agreed that action was needed.

He said: “I know there’s been three accidents since I was elected. Something needs to be done here.

“There’s building sites going up there – we don’t want to spend money but we need to slow down traffic. It’s a very dangerous stretch of road.”

Croft councillor Kath Nisbet added: “The speed on that road is horrendous. It’s getting ridiculous, the more houses that have been built the more cars on the road.”

Councillors unanimously agreed to note the contents of the report and proceed with its recommendations.