Road safety improvements in Newton Abbot 

Torbay Weekly

Safety improvements will be made to a road in Newton Abbot previously described as a ‘death trap.’

Calls had been made to reduce the speed limit on Shaldon Road, just past the junction with Haytor Drive to Milber service station industrial units, to 30 mph from its current 40 limit.

But following a virtual site visit last year, Devon County Council’s ruling cabinet was told the speed limit was correct, though other safety measures were recommended to address concerns.

Updating the Teignbridge highways and traffic orders committee, a highways officer’s report proposed waiting restrictions on some side roads to improve visibility.

Lines and signage to “emphasise the approach” to the junctions with residential streets Foxhollows and Twickenham Road would also be reinstated, along with improving the visibility of the current 40 mph signs.

The officer admitted the “geography” of the road, which has substantial tree cover, meant it sometimes caused problems for drivers and that vegetation would likely be pruned to reduce this.

Councillor Alistair Dewhirst (Lib Dem, Ipplepen & The Kerswells), who called the road a “death trap” when previously requesting the 30 mph limit, said it was “really good news” but requested that a sign telling HGVs not to travel to Shaldon along the route also be improved.

However, Councillor Janet Bradford (Newton Says No, College) said it was “crazy spending this money” and criticised why council bosses hadn’t accepted local members’ requests for the new 30 limit.

“Obviously, I’m pleased that you’re going to do something, but I just think it could just be made 30,” she added.

Committee chair Councillor Martin Wrigley (Lib Dem, Dawlish) said: “In absence of putting the 30 mph limit that we were proposing, I think it’s a good compromise.”

A previous report by highways officers into extending the 30 zone concluded that current speed limits on Shaldon Road are “correct for this particular environment.”

Their speed survey showed motorists were “broadly compliant” with existing speed limits and “collision data did not support a change.”

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