A NUMBER of lorries have ignored signs warning of a road closure between Monkton Heathfield and Taunton.

Traffic will be barred from the road between Nerrols Farm Lane and Maidenbrook Lane except for access for another fortnight for repair work.

Urgent repairs to damaged culverts began on Monday and will continue for a total of three weeks.

Somerset County Council highways engineers were working to repair the road edge along Priorswood Road when they noticed a culvert had partially collapsed, while a second culvert was also blocked and damaged.

Cllr Harvey Siggs, Somerset County Council cabinet member for highways, said: “These repairs are absolutely essential.

“It’s regrettable that the road must be fully closed, but when you’re working on structures under the highway that’s the only option to carry out the majority of the works.”

Contractors are working 12 hours a day, six days a week where possible so the road can re-open as soon as possible.

Repairs at this site are further complicated by the substantial number of services within the carriageway that have to be worked around.

The work will also include measures to increase the capacity of the culverts which should help to prevent the risk of flooding in the future.

Businessman Ray Tully said HGV drivers using their satnavs have driven into Monkton Heathfield and turned into Greenway towards Cheddon Fitzpaine.

Mr Tully said: “The signs on the A38 don’t give drivers enough warning, so lorries have been driving up a narrow lane towards Cheddon Fitzpaine that’s not suitable for them.

“I warned one driver who turned back.”

A county council spokesman said: “The emergency roadworks and closure at Nerrols Farm are unavoidable, and we thank drivers and local residents for their patience while work takes place.

“We would urge all drivers to follow the official diversion routes and have installed two sets of double signs on the A38 as you approach the right turn, and a Visual Management System at the junction to warn and direct traffic.”