Road Safety Campaign and Drive Safe
Report from the DRA Spring 2020 Newsletter:
The SID also known as smiley face installed back in Spring 2019 on Hertford Road is expected to be on the move (Coronavirus permitting) to New Road in the next month.
The SID acts as a visual reminder of the speed limit and is also collecting valuable data on motor vehicle speeds that can help to support further road safety measures.
SID data collected from the Hertford Road made interesting reading. It is pleasing that the percentage of cars travelling below 35 mph has increased to 77% from the previously recorded 73%, although disappointingly the average speed remained at 37mph. Unfortunately, despite this data and the perceived need to introduce further traffic calming measures to Hertford Road, New Road and Station Road, there is no available financing that these roads qualify for at present to implement such measures. The DRA will continue to monitor.
There are currently no Drivesafe sessions scheduled for 2020, this will be reviewed later in the year.
Updated November 2019
In 2018, the DRA set up a Road Safety Campaign to raise money to tackle the road safety issues for pedestrians in Digswell. The main areas of concern raised were speeding, HGV abuse and overgrown vegetation which was obstructing pavements and road signs.
The DRA Road Safety campaign was successful in raising just over £7,000. Thank you again to everyone that contributed. Our aim was to raise awareness and investigate traffic calming measures and to purchase a Solar Speed Indicator Sign (SID) that can be moved around the village.
We are delighted that we were able to purchase a SID and in Spring this year, it was installed on Herford Road. Having been on Hertford Road for 6 months it will be moved to New Road in late 2019. As well as being a visual reminder of the speed limit and slowing traffic down, the SID is also collecting valuable data on motor vehicle speeds that can help to support further road safety measures.
As a result of all the time spent on the Road Safety Campaign and the installation of the SID, the Digswell Drivesafe team have not been active this year. However, this will be reviewed again in 2019. More information on what Drivesafe is and the locations of sites in Digswell can be found below.
Work is also ongoing with our Local Councillor, Richard Smith, to tackle the maintenance of pavements and roads. In 2019, lots of work was carried out around the village, such as hedge trimming, repainted road markings and pavement kerbs being raised.
The DRA will continue to actively manage the Road Safety Campaign to improve road safety for pedestrians in Digswell. Regular updates are provided on this page.
ROAD SAFETY CAMPAIGN IN DIGSWELL
The Road Safety Campaign was set up in early 2018 to raise money to address the main areas of concern, which were:
Overgrown Vegetation obstructing pavements and road signs
- HGV abuse
A copy of the letter can be reviewed by clicking on this link:Road Safety Campaign Letter
As mentioned above, the DRA Road Safety campaign was successful in raising just over £7,000. This money has been spent on purchasing and having installed a SID, which will be relocated every 6 months for the next 5 years between Hertford Road and New Road. Remaining funds were used to pay for the first relocation of the SID from Hertford Road to New Road (please note, furture re-location fees will be funded by the Highways Locality Budget), 30mph wheelie bin stickers and general administrative costs e.g. printing.
The campaign to raise money was established, as despite the Police, our Local Councillor, and MP being sympathetic to our cause, we do not qualify for funding for additional traffic calming measures simply because there haven't been 4 serious incidents within the last 3 years.
Solar Speed Indicator Device
A recent study of the 13 SIDS within Hertfordshire showed that average speeds were reduced by up to 5 mph in the initial 2 weeks and up to 4 mph over 1-year period. We are currently awaiting the data collected from the Hertford Road SID and will share this once received. A study in 2017 over a 1 week period showed that approx 750 cars a day travel through the villiage in excess of 35 mph, we are hopeful that the Hertford Road SID will have reduced the number of cars at this speed.
To overcome the reducing effectiveness over the year, it is suggested that the SID is relocated approx every 6 months to different sites around the Village. Therefore, the SID will be re-located between Hertford Road and New Road.
Police and Crime Commissioner's Action Fund
Unfortunately, our application form to the Police and Crime Commissioner's Action Fund was unsucessful in round 3 (2018). After discussion with our County Councillor it was agreed that applying again in round 4 (2019), was also likely to be unsucessful and therefore, no bid has been made.
Digswell has an DriveSafe team. DriveSafe is a Police and Crime Commissioner initiative which allows local residents to use roadside speed monitoring equipment with the aim of educating drivers and making local roads safer. We have three Police-approved DriveSafe sites in Digswell – two on the Hertford Road, and one on New Road. During a one-hour session, it is not uncommon to record in excess of 40 cars traveling above 35 mph, with a top speed of nearly 50 mph! A Police Community Support Officer had been requested to attend a DriveSafe session to act as a visible enforcer, although they have no powers to issue speeding tickets.
The DriveSafe team are always in need of more volunteers to help. To find out more information please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
In 2016, a lorry watch scheme was proposed to the local police which would work in a similar way as the DriveSafe scheme, recording HGV registrations who did not adhere to the 7.5 ton limit. Unfortunately, local police rejected it due to resourcing issues. However, this continues to be an issue and there have been many incidents of wing-mirrors hitting pedestrians.
The DRA is currently seeking a volunteer to help with tackling this issue. The volunteer would be the main contact for residents/parents to send details of HGV abusers and then to contact the companiues and maybe even name and shame offenders on Twitter/Facebook. If you are interested in this role please e-mail: email@example.com.