FRUSTRATED drivers fed up of waiting are jumping red lights in Wellington and putting lives at risk, it was claimed this week.
The lights at the crossroads with Waitrose and Longforth Road coupled with those in the centre of town are often on opposite sequences, leaving motorists stuck in gridlock, particularly at peak times.
Ian Stock, chairman of the Wellington Business Association, received several reports from traders about cars illegally going through them on red to avoid waiting and the issue was discussed by the town council on Monday (February 3).
He said: “The main concern is safety. At very busy times drivers are jumping the lights.
“They feel there will potentially be accidents with pedestrians and are also worried about a lack of trade.
“Customers have apparently said to retailers they are not shopping in Wellington as traffic is horrendous, which is also thought to make delivery of supplies difficult.”
Cllr Bob Bowrah said: “People are jumping the town centre lights. I've seen them and they are getting frustrated.
“We need something like a 'no go box' because the sequence is causing all sorts of problems.”
Lights have been a problem for some time, especially with the increased number of cars heading in and out of Waitrose since it opened in 2010.
The lights at Longforth are synchronised four ways which leads to a build up of traffic in the centre of town, particularly when the lights in South Street and North Street allow cars to pass through to High street.
It is hoped congestion will ease when the Longforth Farm development spine road is in operation but Cllr James Hunt echoed Taunton Deane MP Jeremy Browne's claims that the town needs a proper Northern Relief Road.
Cllr Peter Critchard suggested allowing less traffic out of Waitrose as this seems to be the quietest of the four exits, making more time for cars coming from other directions.
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