Road safety review on Leighton Buzzard bypass after a fatal collision

A strategic review of road safety locally is under way after a man in his 20s lost his life on the Leighton Buzzard southern bypass.

Flowers left at the scene of the incident
Flowers left at the scene of the incident

More than 3,560 signatures have been collected on an online petition after 26-year-old Brandan Moriarty died in a three-car collision on the A4146 between the Grovebury Road and Billington Road roundabouts.

He was returning to his family home in Wing when the incident happened in March.

His partner has led calls for safety action following the fatal accident, with local authorities and the emergency services already considering their options.

The response to the collision was raised at the start of a Central Bedfordshire Council traffic management meeting.

Conservative Arlesey councillor Ian Dalgarno said: “We take road safety at Central Bedfordshire Council extremely seriously.

“We were very sorry to hear about the recent incident in which a gentleman lost his life. We’re aware of the petition on the A505.

“But we’re unable to formally add it to today’s agenda as the petition wasn’t submitted to the council.

“Officers have tried to reach out to the lead petitioner. However, we’re yet to receive that documentation. We understand the parish council may wish to submit a separate petition on the A505.

“Should we receive one through the correct channels, of course we’ll discuss this at the next available traffic management meeting.

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“In the meantime, we’ll continue to work with Bedfordshire Police and Bedfordshire County Fire and Rescue Service to undertake a strategic review of the area.

“The information and data we’ve received indicates it was unlikely the road condition was a contributory factor to the recent accident,” added councillor Dalgarno, who chairs the meeting.

“We’ve commissioned a collision data analysis report for the road and our traffic management officers are currently reviewing the recommendations of that report.

“A joint working group with the police and the fire service has been set up and is aiming to develop a road safety education campaign which will encourage safer driving on our roads.”

Leighton-Linslade town and CBC councillors Amanda Dodwell, Ray Berry, and David Bowater have been campaigning for change.

They said at the time: “We’ve seen a number of accidents on the Leighton Buzzard southern bypass during the past few weeks, sadly including one fatality.

“When the road was built, it was wider than a normal single carriageway road, but was not a dual carriageway.

“This has created an unofficial third lane in the middle, used for overtaking by traffic travelling in both directions. Action must be taken to improve safety.”

The councillors believe the best option in the long-term would be to convert the road into a dual carriageway with a central reservation.

A safety video which concerned the Leighton Buzzard bypass was posted on social media by the fire service in the aftermath of the tragedy.

It said: “Unfortunately, we continue to see speeding motorists performing dangerous manoeuvres along this stretch of road. We’ll work alongside Bedfordshire Police to make this road safer.”

Independent Tithe Farm CBC councillor Pat Hamill has asked the CBC leader about increased use of average speed cameras as “safety measures are needed now”.