Dramatic crash as council investigates if parking is making road dangerous

The accident on July 2, 2016 in Hockliffe Road, Leighton Buzzard
The accident on July 2, 2016 in Hockliffe Road, Leighton Buzzard

This is the shocking scene which greeted residents in a Leighton Buzzard street who were woken abruptly in the middle of the night.

The overturned vehicle is the latest in a string of accidents along Hockliffe Road, where people have been campaigning for safety measures for years.

Mum Lisa Jacobs has alerted MP Andrew Selous about the latest incident at 2am on Saturday, July 2 and has previously pressed Central Beds Council to take action to mitigate the risks the road poses by reducing the speed limit to 20mph.

She said: “I believe the crash on Saturday made quite a noise – but we did not stir thanks to having a little baby who keeps us up throughout the night!

“Despite numerous residents on Hockliffe Road speaking to the council, we have not seen anything done regarding the speed limit. There are a lot of young families on our road and cars fly down it without a second thought.”

In December, Lisa learned via her MP that additional traffic calming schemes would have to wait until Central Beds Council’s new highways contractor was in place in April 2016. Budgets would then be set for the 2016-17 financial year and a programme of works agreed.

An email from the council to Mr Selous stated about Hockliffe Road: “This area of concern will be included in that programme”.

Back in December 2014 the LBO reported how Lisa was lucky to emerge unscathed when she got in her car outside her home. Moments later her vehicle was struck by a motorist attempting to avoid a car allegedly speeding on the opposite side of the road.

The incident came a month after her car was struck by an allegedly speeding van driver, who failed to stop before travelling out of town.

Following the collisions she created a petition to ask for the speed limit to be lowered “before there was a fatality”.

At the time Cllr Brian Spurr, executive member for community services, said: “We are aware of residents’ concerns about Hockliffe Road, and our engineers will be visiting the site to review conditions there, before identifying possible traffic-calming measures on the back of that review. Traffic-calming needs to carried out to allow 20mph to be introduced there.”

This week, a spokesman for Central Beds Council added: “We are currently assessing whether the parking on a section of Hockliffe Road is impacting on safety.

“We will also be improving both Hockliffe and Vandyke Road, drawing on a funding commitment made by the developers of Clipstone Park.”

A spokesman for Beds Police said: “We were called at around 2.25am on Saturday (2 July) to reports of a car overturned in Hockliffe Road. The car was recovered by 4am and one man was reported on suspicion of dangerous driving.”

> Is parking making the road dangerous? What other roads in LBO land need attention? Send your views to news@lbobserver.co.uk