How new 'wooden' crash barriers are making one of Lancashire's most dangerous roads safer
An innovative new safety barrier designed to blend in with the natural environment is currently being installed along one of Lancashire’s key rural routes.
The work is the latest phase of Lancashire County Council’s programme to improve safety on a number of roads which have a historically high rate of casualties.
The timber-clad vehicle restraint barriers are being installed at various locations along the A683 in the north of the county, including the Crook O’ Lune, Claughton, Hornby, Melling railway bridge, and Greta Bridge near the village of Tunstall.
The scheme is part of the Safer Roads Programme, a £7.9m investment to improve safety on five A-roads identified by the Department for Transport as the county’s historically most dangerous routes.
Further phases of the programme include improvements to signs and road markings, and the installation of average speed cameras.
The new barriers are constructed from steel and have the same strength as the type normally used, but are clad in an attractive timber designed to be less visually intrusive.
The work to fit them is scheduled to be completed around the end of October. The team installing them are using temporary traffic signals and stop/go boards as they work along the A683, with drivers warned to expect short delays.
County Councillor Charlie Edward, cabinet member for highways and transport, said: “We’re always working to try to improve travel in Lancashire, and this includes doing whatever we can to make sure people reach their destination safely.
“We have been successful in a bid for funding to the Department for Transport’s Safer Roads Programme which is allowing us to make major improvements to a number of roads which have a record of serious incidents.
“Speeding has very often been a factor in these incidents, and the measures we are putting in place are designed to reduce vehicle speeds through enforcement, as well as adding measures which help to improve safety and reduce the severity of any future incidents.
“I’m pleased that we’re using these new timber clad barriers for the first time in Lancashire to make the A683 safer while helping to preserve the appearance of one of our most beautiful rural areas.
“Our contractor is doing their best to keep disruption to a minimum, however I’m grateful for people’s patience over the coming weeks while temporary traffic management is needed to allow the new barriers to be installed safely.”
The Safer Roads Programme also includes improvements to the A682 in Pendle, A6 and A588 in Lancaster, and A581 in Chorley and West Lancashire.