Highways Act 1988 Section 39

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    Please can you help us to answer the following road safety questions.

    In accordance with  Highways Act 1988 Section 39:-
    What are the Local Highways Authorities statutory obligations following significant changes to design & layout of the uncontrolled A5111 Dual Carriageway access Gap?

    The Highways Authority have introduced and endorsed U-turn and Right turn manoeuvres which create new conflicts from vehicles crossing paths on the dual carriageway without any road signage or markings.

    Should the Local Highways Authorities answer questions from Derby Road users and provide information and advice to the Public for the safe use of a new road layout?

    Click on the link below to see what the junction looks like:


    Andrew Fraser

    Hello, Jim.

    Section 39 (3) (a) requires local authorities to carry out studies into accidents arising out of the use of vehicles on their roads, and must, in the light of those studies, take such measures as appear to the authority to be appropriate to prevent such accidents. In this case, I would have expected the local authority to have studied the accident record at the site, before acting, and, having done so, made sure that their action ensured that further accidents did not arise. The questions are, therefore, “Did the authority carry out an accident study?” and “What action has it taken to ensure that further accidents are prevented?”. One might also ask whether a Road Safety Audit was conducted. This doesn’t answer your question, but I think it’s important to establish what was done before the change. (Presumably, the answer the authority would give is that it will “monitor the situation” after the change.)

    Another, rather basic question, should be asked, namely, “Why does the local authority wish to keep this rather odd junction open, in any case, when the safest thing it could do would be to close the gap in the central reserve and permit only left-in, left out manoeuvres to and from Eastwood Drive?” I feel that there is more to this than meets the eye.

    As to your second question, (a) local authorities certainly should be answering questions – perhaps your local councillor could help and (b) a local authority’s connection with road users is through road signing. It might be argued that the Highway Code provides advice on the safe use of any road layout.

    I’m afraid the above is probably not very much use to you – interpretation of the law is not really for the likes of me – you would probably be better consulting a solicitor with expertise in roads matters.

    I am sorry to hear that you are still having problems with the junction, and I am shocked to read that a local roads authority claims that it does not hold “road safety information” for the gap. Without that, I cannot see how a local roads authority can carry out its duties under the Act. In any case, some information can be gleaned by anyone from https://www.crashmap.co.uk/, albeit at a price, and unvalidated by any local authority road safety engineer.

    I hope something of the above helps.


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