Work to improve safety of notorious Gaul Road junction in March should start soon says councillor

Work could start on Gaul Road traffic lights in the next couple of months.
Work could start on Gaul Road traffic lights in the next couple of months.

The latest accident on March by-pass in which a man his 70s suffered multiple injuries has resulted in fresh calls for action at the notorious Gaul Road junction.

Yesterday (Thursday) morning’s incident left the by-pass closed for several hours while emergency services attended the scene of the two-vehicle crash.

Councillor Steve Count.

Councillor Steve Count.

The injured man, who was from the March area and driving a Ford Mondeo Zetec, had to be freed from his vehicle by fire crews before being airlifted to Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge.

A spokesman for the Magpas air ambulance said: “Magpas enhanced medical team assessed one patient (in his 70s) who had sustained multiple injuries. They worked alongside an EEAST Ambulance Service paramedic crew at the scene to provide him with advanced care at the roadside, before airlifting him to Addenbrooke’s Hospital. The man was in a critical condition upon arrival.”

The driver of the other vehicle a Vauxhall Vectra was uninjured in the crash which happened at around 10.36am.

Police have issued an appeal for witnesses to the accident and anyone with information should call 101 quoting reference CC-29032018-0098.

The collision happened close to the Gaul Road junction where developer Canon Kirk were supposed to have started work to install traffic lights last December.

However, they were accused that month of using the planning system to delay the work by county council leader Coun Steve Count who wrote a furious objection when the developer tried to postpone the lights listing them at 13 and 14 on a long list of works associated with the building of 135 homes off Gaul Road.

At the time Coun Count wrote: “The delivery of this junction improvement is clearly behind schedule. There have been a plethora of accidents at this junction including the loss of a life since it was first anticipated Cannon Kirk would deliver the safety improvements required.

“Cannon Kirk have steadfastly used the planning system to delay and avoid the completion of this junction at every opportunity.”

Speaking on Friday Coun Count said: “I warned there would be more accidents unless this work was carried out and there was one yesterday. It is unclear whether the junction played a part in the crash, but I am bitterly disappointed the work to install the lights still has not started.”

However, he said he was expecting an update on when the work would begin within the next week or so.

He said: “I understand there has been a hold up while the developer irons out problems with a complicated drainage matter with the Middle Level. I believe they have finally reached an agreement so work should be able to begin. There has been an added complication of Anglian Water carrying out work at Westry which has seen the use of temporary traffic lights and I understand Cambridgeshire Highways did not want to see the by-pass reduced to one-lane for the Gaul Road lights work at the same time.

“I believe a schedule has been sorted out that will allow some work at Gaul Road that does not require temporary traffic lights on the bypass to go ahead and I’m awaiting an update on when that will begin together with a full timetable of work to install the lights, improve the road surface and for some road widening to be carried out.”