Action demanded on Kendal's 'racetrack' death road

PRESSURE is being ramped up to get something done about motorists using a two-lane road out of Kendal as a ‘racetrack’.

Speeding on Aynam Road is being reported to Cumbria County Council – backed by a public petition bearing hundreds of signatures.

Police have also been carrying out checks on the riverside strip to catch those putting their foot to the floor.

Concern has increased following the tragic death in March of Robert ‘H’ Clinton, 21, of Well Ings, Kendal.

He was a passenger in a Peugeot that left the road, although no formal cause for the collision has yet been officially recorded.

Labour party activists, led by local businessman Jim Barker, have been organising a campaign and petition. The issue is also high on the agenda of South Lakeland MP Tim Farron.

Mr Barker, who lives nearby and represents the Westmorland and Lonsdale Labour Party, said: “It’s a residential area and it is time to take action to protect motorists, cyclists, pedestrians and residents.”

Mr Barker wants to see the South Lakeland Local Committee – which is a local sub-committee of the larger Cumbria County Council – install some traffic calming measures.

“This has been an issue for residents for a long time and it’s time councillors listened to their concerns and took action before there is another tragedy on this dangerous stretch of road,” he said.

Among the issues raised were safety of using the pedestrian crossing at Abbot Hall Fields.

Mr Barker said: “People have reported attempting to cross, only to get half way and have a car in the other lane pass without stopping.” “People have also called for the visibility of the crossing to be improved, and say that after crossing Miller Bridge many cars accelerate hard, possibly unaware of the speed limit, as they hit the dual carriage way where there are no speed signs.”

Mr Farron also has in mind reports of accidents around Sedbergh Road, Shap Road and the Mintsfeet Industrial Estate. He said: “Every accident is one too many. We must act now to deal with this problem.

“I’ll be asking the residents what changes they’d like to make the road safer. I’ll also ask police and councillors to make sure action is taken quickly. There are things we can do today, like speed monitoring and a higher police presence in the area.”

Comments (20)

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8:26am Fri 26 Jul 13

Kent123 says...

I've signed the petition because something has to be done about this problem.

I object, however, to the political presence associated with the campaign.

Why does the Westmorland and Lonsdale Constituency Labour Party have to be part of it?
I've signed the petition because something has to be done about this problem. I object, however, to the political presence associated with the campaign. Why does the Westmorland and Lonsdale Constituency Labour Party have to be part of it? Kent123
  • Score: 0

8:26am Fri 26 Jul 13

jd@jdifa.co.uk says...

How about an old fashioned policeman enforcing the law occasionally?
How about an old fashioned policeman enforcing the law occasionally? jd@jdifa.co.uk
  • Score: 0

9:00am Fri 26 Jul 13

nixon1 says...

What can be done to reduce speed along that road? Speedbumps? This would limit traffic to 15mph max to be able to safely get over them....Chicane? This would cause Aynam Road to be single carriageway effectively doubling the amount of traffic along that section and we all know what the congestion problems are like in Kendal already.

What is the petition and Jim barker suggesting as a resolution?
What can be done to reduce speed along that road? Speedbumps? This would limit traffic to 15mph max to be able to safely get over them....Chicane? This would cause Aynam Road to be single carriageway effectively doubling the amount of traffic along that section and we all know what the congestion problems are like in Kendal already. What is the petition and Jim barker suggesting as a resolution? nixon1
  • Score: 0

9:07am Fri 26 Jul 13

KendalSmithy says...

My solution to this problem has been, for many years, a reversion to two-way travel on Aynam Road. As far as I know such accidents never happened when there was the likelihood of vehicles travelling in the opposite direction. The Miller Bridge constriction problem needs to be resolved (by widening or replacement) as soon as possible and then the whole of Kendal can be made two-way once more.
My solution to this problem has been, for many years, a reversion to two-way travel on Aynam Road. As far as I know such accidents never happened when there was the likelihood of vehicles travelling in the opposite direction. The Miller Bridge constriction problem needs to be resolved (by widening or replacement) as soon as possible and then the whole of Kendal can be made two-way once more. KendalSmithy
  • Score: 0

10:12am Fri 26 Jul 13

worldsgonemad says...

The crossing is just dangerous, it needs to be a push button one and it's a miracle no one has been killed trying to use it. A couple of days ago I stopped as some boys were approaching the crossing but a car in the other lane came from behind and flew past me as they started to cross.
The crossing is just dangerous, it needs to be a push button one and it's a miracle no one has been killed trying to use it. A couple of days ago I stopped as some boys were approaching the crossing but a car in the other lane came from behind and flew past me as they started to cross. worldsgonemad
  • Score: 1

10:30am Fri 26 Jul 13

KendalSmithy says...

worldsgonemad wrote:
The crossing is just dangerous, it needs to be a push button one and it's a miracle no one has been killed trying to use it. A couple of days ago I stopped as some boys were approaching the crossing but a car in the other lane came from behind and flew past me as they started to cross.
This problem would also be solved if the road was two-way.
[quote][p][bold]worldsgonemad[/bold] wrote: The crossing is just dangerous, it needs to be a push button one and it's a miracle no one has been killed trying to use it. A couple of days ago I stopped as some boys were approaching the crossing but a car in the other lane came from behind and flew past me as they started to cross.[/p][/quote]This problem would also be solved if the road was two-way. KendalSmithy
  • Score: 0

11:22am Fri 26 Jul 13

Guanajuato says...

The crossing isn't dangerous at all. Its the morons in the cars that are dangerous. Its the same morons who can't control their car round those two curves further along Aynam road.

There's a reason its illegal to overtake on the zig-zag lines.

People waiting to cross/crossing can be seen for a few hundred yards. But of course, with motorists being the kings of the roads, anything that makes them slow down/stop must be dangerous.

Why are those two curves so difficult at ~30mph (or even 40) when there's far tighter corners on the A65 that are 60 limits and don't cause crashes? Its not the road itself, but the attitudes of drivers that need changing. Quite often, drivers will effectively try to straighten those corners irrespective of whether there's another vehicle alongside.

Whilst we're on the subject of changes, HGVs should be banned from Nether Bridge - they cause immense damage to the road surface and kerbs turning left onto Milnthorpe road. I've seen several nearly hit the wall on the inside of that left bend - I'm surprised no pedestrian has been hit. They often force cars heading into Kendal to stop. Then they block the narrow section by South Road. There's a much more suitable route over Romney Bridge.
The crossing isn't dangerous at all. Its the morons in the cars that are dangerous. Its the same morons who can't control their car round those two curves further along Aynam road. There's a reason its illegal to overtake on the zig-zag lines. People waiting to cross/crossing can be seen for a few hundred yards. But of course, with motorists being the kings of the roads, anything that makes them slow down/stop must be dangerous. Why are those two curves so difficult at ~30mph (or even 40) when there's far tighter corners on the A65 that are 60 limits and don't cause crashes? Its not the road itself, but the attitudes of drivers that need changing. Quite often, drivers will effectively try to straighten those corners irrespective of whether there's another vehicle alongside. Whilst we're on the subject of changes, HGVs should be banned from Nether Bridge - they cause immense damage to the road surface and kerbs turning left onto Milnthorpe road. I've seen several nearly hit the wall on the inside of that left bend - I'm surprised no pedestrian has been hit. They often force cars heading into Kendal to stop. Then they block the narrow section by South Road. There's a much more suitable route over Romney Bridge. Guanajuato
  • Score: 2

1:06pm Fri 26 Jul 13

Spotty Fish says...

Of course the curves are ok at 30 or even 40mph Guanajuato. That's not the problem, it's the drivers that go faster than that, that are the issue. They are actually quite sharp bends but people just don't seem to realise, and when they find out too late they usually don't have the skills to sort out the problem.

As for your comment about the crossing. Well actually it is dangerous because unfortunately cars do approach it too quickly and don't always see the pedestrians. The problem is people have to sit and wait to cross the single lane Miller bridge and then once over it the road becomes a drag race as people try to make up time. If it was a controlled crossing like the one before the bridge it would be much safer for pedestrians and indeed drivers. Quite often pedestrians hover in the vicinity of the crossing but not actually at it, and as a driver it's not always easy to tell if they're going to cross. A red stop light would make it much safer for all.
Of course the curves are ok at 30 or even 40mph Guanajuato. That's not the problem, it's the drivers that go faster than that, that are the issue. They are actually quite sharp bends but people just don't seem to realise, and when they find out too late they usually don't have the skills to sort out the problem. As for your comment about the crossing. Well actually it is dangerous because unfortunately cars do approach it too quickly and don't always see the pedestrians. The problem is people have to sit and wait to cross the single lane Miller bridge and then once over it the road becomes a drag race as people try to make up time. If it was a controlled crossing like the one before the bridge it would be much safer for pedestrians and indeed drivers. Quite often pedestrians hover in the vicinity of the crossing but not actually at it, and as a driver it's not always easy to tell if they're going to cross. A red stop light would make it much safer for all. Spotty Fish
  • Score: 1

8:24pm Fri 26 Jul 13

Grumpyoldbiker says...

Reverting back to two way traffic and improving the cross town route is the most logical way forward. I won't hold my breath waiting for a positive outcome.
Reverting back to two way traffic and improving the cross town route is the most logical way forward. I won't hold my breath waiting for a positive outcome. Grumpyoldbiker
  • Score: 0

9:41am Sat 27 Jul 13

JimBarker says...

nixon1 wrote:
What can be done to reduce speed along that road? Speedbumps? This would limit traffic to 15mph max to be able to safely get over them....Chicane? This would cause Aynam Road to be single carriageway effectively doubling the amount of traffic along that section and we all know what the congestion problems are like in Kendal already.

What is the petition and Jim barker suggesting as a resolution?
The petition can be found at http://www.change.or
g.uk it calls on the South Lakeland Local Committee to swift action to stop speeding on Aynam Rd. No specific recommendations are made. What is required is a careful analysis of the problems and appraisal of the options for solving them.The petition raises the issue and invites the public to share their experiences and views, which will be passed on to our Councillors to take action.
As someone who crosses this road with two young children on a regular basis, I know how fast some drivers go along this stretch. Something must be done to avert another tragedy.
[quote][p][bold]nixon1[/bold] wrote: What can be done to reduce speed along that road? Speedbumps? This would limit traffic to 15mph max to be able to safely get over them....Chicane? This would cause Aynam Road to be single carriageway effectively doubling the amount of traffic along that section and we all know what the congestion problems are like in Kendal already. What is the petition and Jim barker suggesting as a resolution?[/p][/quote]The petition can be found at http://www.change.or g.uk it calls on the South Lakeland Local Committee to swift action to stop speeding on Aynam Rd. No specific recommendations are made. What is required is a careful analysis of the problems and appraisal of the options for solving them.The petition raises the issue and invites the public to share their experiences and views, which will be passed on to our Councillors to take action. As someone who crosses this road with two young children on a regular basis, I know how fast some drivers go along this stretch. Something must be done to avert another tragedy. JimBarker
  • Score: 1

10:08am Sat 27 Jul 13

KendalSmithy says...

Jim Barker's petition link is wrong. Here is the correct one (you will need to copy/paste this into your browser's address window):
http://www.change.or
g/en-GB/petitions/th
e-south-lakeland-loc
al-committee-take-sw
ift-action-to-stop-s
peeding-and-install-
traffic-calming-on-a
ynam-rd
Jim Barker's petition link is wrong. Here is the correct one (you will need to copy/paste this into your browser's address window): http://www.change.or g/en-GB/petitions/th e-south-lakeland-loc al-committee-take-sw ift-action-to-stop-s peeding-and-install- traffic-calming-on-a ynam-rd KendalSmithy
  • Score: 0

11:21am Sat 27 Jul 13

JimBarker says...

KendalSmithy wrote:
Jim Barker's petition link is wrong. Here is the correct one (you will need to copy/paste this into your browser's address window):
http://www.change.or

g/en-GB/petitions/th

e-south-lakeland-loc

al-committee-take-sw

ift-action-to-stop-s

peeding-and-install-

traffic-calming-on-a

ynam-rd
Well spotted, thanks KendalSmithy.
[quote][p][bold]KendalSmithy[/bold] wrote: Jim Barker's petition link is wrong. Here is the correct one (you will need to copy/paste this into your browser's address window): http://www.change.or g/en-GB/petitions/th e-south-lakeland-loc al-committee-take-sw ift-action-to-stop-s peeding-and-install- traffic-calming-on-a ynam-rd[/p][/quote]Well spotted, thanks KendalSmithy. JimBarker
  • Score: 0

2:52pm Tue 30 Jul 13

nixon1 says...

I don't require the petition link as i do not feel the need to sign it. Whatever needs to be done needs to be done by the Police, who are fully aware of the issues in the area. Greater police presence in the area is needed to deter (often young) drivers of all ages to reduce their speeds along this section. No Highway alterations need to be made. Note that all accidents in this area have been a result of fast or dangerous driving. Alothough speeds throughout the day may be higher than average along Aynam Road i'm sure from memory most if not all of the accidents have occured at night. This suggests that as traiffic flow is reduced motorists are driving too fast to negotiate the corners. I do not believe that if the road was to be made 2 way it would not reduce the amount of accidents. At night drivers heading in both directions would be abke to see lights coming towards them, thus if unsafe drivers see no lights they will still drive fast and cut the corner. If a car heading north bound is hidden by a tree a southbound driver will cut the corner believing it is safe to do so and a collision will doubt happen. If anything i think if the road was to be made 2 way it might even increase the amount of accidents.

Bad drivers will drive badly regardelss of road condition or visibility etc.

(Sorry it's long winded but that's my opinion, correct or otherwise).
I don't require the petition link as i do not feel the need to sign it. Whatever needs to be done needs to be done by the Police, who are fully aware of the issues in the area. Greater police presence in the area is needed to deter (often young) drivers of all ages to reduce their speeds along this section. No Highway alterations need to be made. Note that all accidents in this area have been a result of fast or dangerous driving. Alothough speeds throughout the day may be higher than average along Aynam Road i'm sure from memory most if not all of the accidents have occured at night. This suggests that as traiffic flow is reduced motorists are driving too fast to negotiate the corners. I do not believe that if the road was to be made 2 way it would not reduce the amount of accidents. At night drivers heading in both directions would be abke to see lights coming towards them, thus if unsafe drivers see no lights they will still drive fast and cut the corner. If a car heading north bound is hidden by a tree a southbound driver will cut the corner believing it is safe to do so and a collision will doubt happen. If anything i think if the road was to be made 2 way it might even increase the amount of accidents. Bad drivers will drive badly regardelss of road condition or visibility etc. (Sorry it's long winded but that's my opinion, correct or otherwise). nixon1
  • Score: 1

6:18am Wed 31 Jul 13

Gingery says...

This issue is years old. Seven years ago when a friend and I used Aynam Road crossing we regularly experienced drivers swerving around us when we were well onto the crossing. The looks on their faces were always angry, "what are you doing on there" expressions. This said it all to me. People wonder why push-button crossings are required, and never has it been more needed here however I feel the only way to hit the message home is to install a speed camera and get some fines handed out. If this is considered to harsh then perhaps a few reminders of the speed limit, and one of those digital signs by the old GoodAcre site. Of course it'll spoil our quaint old town but so do deaths and fear of crossing the road.
This issue is years old. Seven years ago when a friend and I used Aynam Road crossing we regularly experienced drivers swerving around us when we were well onto the crossing. The looks on their faces were always angry, "what are you doing on there" expressions. This said it all to me. People wonder why push-button crossings are required, and never has it been more needed here however I feel the only way to hit the message home is to install a speed camera and get some fines handed out. If this is considered to harsh then perhaps a few reminders of the speed limit, and one of those digital signs by the old GoodAcre site. Of course it'll spoil our quaint old town but so do deaths and fear of crossing the road. Gingery
  • Score: 2

6:20am Wed 31 Jul 13

Gingery says...

ps gave up trying to report speeding on that road, which caused noise disturbance for residents at night when the police started asking "did you get their number plate". No they were going to fast.
ps gave up trying to report speeding on that road, which caused noise disturbance for residents at night when the police started asking "did you get their number plate". No they were going to fast. Gingery
  • Score: 1

9:46am Wed 31 Jul 13

life cycle too says...

You would need to carpet the full length of the road with speed cameras for them to "work".
Otherwise the offending drivers would simply slow down for the speed camera... and speed up to make up for lost time. Meanwhile police would be unlikely to attend a road with a speed camera on it!

In the current climate, it is unlikely that the police could afford the resources to sit all night waiting for one or two drivers that are the cause of the problems... but any sort of obstacle to slow them would simply be regarded as a challenge to their driving "skills", so there is little else that would work.
You would need to carpet the full length of the road with speed cameras for them to "work". Otherwise the offending drivers would simply slow down for the speed camera... and speed up to make up for lost time. Meanwhile police would be unlikely to attend a road with a speed camera on it! In the current climate, it is unlikely that the police could afford the resources to sit all night waiting for one or two drivers that are the cause of the problems... but any sort of obstacle to slow them would simply be regarded as a challenge to their driving "skills", so there is little else that would work. life cycle too
  • Score: 0

12:02pm Wed 31 Jul 13

nixon1 says...

How about Average Speed Cameras placed at both ends of Aynam Road. This way it would illiminate the concerns LifeCycle has about slowing down and speeding up.
How about Average Speed Cameras placed at both ends of Aynam Road. This way it would illiminate the concerns LifeCycle has about slowing down and speeding up. nixon1
  • Score: 1

4:05pm Wed 31 Jul 13

KendalSmithy says...

Opening the road to two-way traffic and allowing limited parking on one side would work a treat. It would also alleviate the horrendous parking problems for the Aynam Road residents. A recent letter in the WG by Ruth Southall illustrates how frustrating it can be to have to park hundreds of yards away from your home. Limited parking is currently allowed there but nobody dare leave their cars on the street because of the boy racers who are confident of two clear lanes from one end of the road to the other. Take away that confidence and everything would slow down. Take ANY other two-way road in Kendal as an example - imagine if Shap Road was one-way with no parking! Also - did we ever hear of speeding accidents there when the road used to be two-way?
Opening the road to two-way traffic and allowing limited parking on one side would work a treat. It would also alleviate the horrendous parking problems for the Aynam Road residents. A recent letter in the WG by Ruth Southall illustrates how frustrating it can be to have to park hundreds of yards away from your home. Limited parking is currently allowed there but nobody dare leave their cars on the street because of the boy racers who are confident of two clear lanes from one end of the road to the other. Take away that confidence and everything would slow down. Take ANY other two-way road in Kendal as an example - imagine if Shap Road was one-way with no parking! Also - did we ever hear of speeding accidents there when the road used to be two-way? KendalSmithy
  • Score: 0

6:37pm Wed 31 Jul 13

life cycle too says...

nixon1 wrote:
How about Average Speed Cameras placed at both ends of Aynam Road. This way it would illiminate the concerns LifeCycle has about slowing down and speeding up.
Average speed cameras have to have a camera placed after any access point, so would prove to be a very expensive hammer to crack a few mindless nuts!

Kendal seems unable to afford even basic CCTV coverage of the town, which would be more useful in addressing more criminal behaviour than these speeders.
Perhaps those who are petitioning should make enquiries as to the possibility of community speed watch projects?
It would unfortunately mean them having to do something about it themselves in their own time for no reward... not a popular pastime these days!
[quote][p][bold]nixon1[/bold] wrote: How about Average Speed Cameras placed at both ends of Aynam Road. This way it would illiminate the concerns LifeCycle has about slowing down and speeding up.[/p][/quote]Average speed cameras have to have a camera placed after any access point, so would prove to be a very expensive hammer to crack a few mindless nuts! Kendal seems unable to afford even basic CCTV coverage of the town, which would be more useful in addressing more criminal behaviour than these speeders. Perhaps those who are petitioning should make enquiries as to the possibility of community speed watch projects? It would unfortunately mean them having to do something about it themselves in their own time for no reward... not a popular pastime these days! life cycle too
  • Score: 1

8:48am Thu 1 Aug 13

BillyL says...

There are average speed cameras available that are small enough to be held in one hand. There will, no doubt be more similar average speed cameras becoming available soon as the manufacturers see the benefits of smaller cameras. They can be set up to accept traffic from a number of access points and are able to cover the whole of Aynam Road with ease.
The occasional use of police enforcement will go some way to making the situation better but unless you can place 2 of them on site 24/7 that intervention won't be fully effective. Who would suggest and then pay for that?
The infrastructure and support already exists to use speed cameras and an average speed enforcement system will be effective if implemented correctly. Oh!...and it is all paid for by those who decide to speed down Aynam Road.
All the council and MP's need to do is admit they are short of an answer and ask for advice from experts in traffic management and calming measures.
It is annoying to see young and old racing down that road in an irresponsible and reckless way; those who crash of the road have usually been racing.
Councillors, petitioners and MP's can indulge themselves in blue-sky thinking and placing ineffective measures but the economic and effective answer can be in place in weeks, why not just do it?
There are average speed cameras available that are small enough to be held in one hand. There will, no doubt be more similar average speed cameras becoming available soon as the manufacturers see the benefits of smaller cameras. They can be set up to accept traffic from a number of access points and are able to cover the whole of Aynam Road with ease. The occasional use of police enforcement will go some way to making the situation better but unless you can place 2 of them on site 24/7 that intervention won't be fully effective. Who would suggest and then pay for that? The infrastructure and support already exists to use speed cameras and an average speed enforcement system will be effective if implemented correctly. Oh!...and it is all paid for by those who decide to speed down Aynam Road. All the council and MP's need to do is admit they are short of an answer and ask for advice from experts in traffic management and calming measures. It is annoying to see young and old racing down that road in an irresponsible and reckless way; those who crash of the road have usually been racing. Councillors, petitioners and MP's can indulge themselves in blue-sky thinking and placing ineffective measures but the economic and effective answer can be in place in weeks, why not just do it? BillyL
  • Score: 1

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