'Maniac BMW drivers' blamed for speeding issues near care home in Ponteland

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A councillor has singled out BMW drivers after concerned residents called for something to be done about speeding issues on a residential road in Ponteland.

Northumberland County Council received a petition signed by 183 residents of the town’s Jameson Estate calling for ‘urgent action’ to address speeding between the former Northumbria Police headquarters site and Grange Lea Care Home on North Road.

Officers told members of the Castle Morpeth Local Area Committee that speed surveys had been carried out since the petition was handed in and confirmed that there was a speeding issue there.

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Speaking at the meeting, highways officer Neil Snowdon said: “There is a problem with excessive speed there. We will work with the police to identify an appropriate solution and appropriate enforcement action going forward.”

Coun Richard Dodd.Coun Richard Dodd.
Coun Richard Dodd.

The area’s ward councillor, Richard Dodd, criticised some drivers as “maniacs”.

He said: “This road has been problematic, but there has been money spent on it. Some would say wisely, some would say unwisely.

“The amount of maniacs on that road, many of them in BMWs – that road is downright dangerous. There is a huge amount of cyclists on that road.

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“People aren’t coming from far and wide to speed on North Road – this is residents that are doing the speeding, let’s be under no illusion.”

Speed surveys carried out in October and November last year found that the average speed on the 30mph road was 34.4mph northbound and 31mph southbound. In addition, 15 per cent of drivers travelling north were travelling over 39.1mph, while the same percentage of drivers heading south were going more than 36.4mph.

However, accident data from Northumbria Police showed that there had been no collisions resulting in injuries since the 30mph zone was extended in 2017.

It was also noted that Ponteland Town Council intends to introduce a ‘speed indicator display sign’ to encourage motorists to slow down.

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A report presented to members said that following a period of enforcement by police, as well as the potential introduction of the new sign, further speed surveys would be carried out to measure the impact of the new measures.