Many main roads in central Preston became gridlocked last night leading to frustration and anger of drivers and pedestrians alike.
From around 5pm onwards on Thursday evening traffic congestion affected most roads in and out of the city due to a combination of roadworks, accidents and bad weather – a brief hailstone storm made streets slippy and reduced visibility.
The horrendous tailbacks, far worse on Thursday than the ‘normal’ rush hour jams, made things difficult for pedestrians as well as impatient car drivers made crossing roads very awkward and dangerous.
The A6 Garstang Road, A583 Watery Lane between A5072 West Strand / Tulketh Road and B6241 Tulketh Brow, Ashton-On-Ribble, A6 London Road before A59 New Hall Lane – Frenchwood, A59 Ring Way at A5071 Corporation Street traffic lights, A59 Ring Way at A6 North Road traffic lights were all affected. Friargate and Fishergate came to a virtual standstill for a while.
Traffic diverted due to the closure of Marsh Lane clogged normally empty Croft Street, Pedder Street and Ashton Street leading to huge jams.
Tailbacks affected traffic for miles outside the city with drivers queuing for ages to get on the M6. We have heard stories from frustrated travelers saying it was taking an hour to drive two miles!
This is not the first time Preston has come to a stop at rush hour. In fact it is rapidly becoming the norm in and around the city centre. Lancashire County Council do not seem to have a solution to traffic problems other than to encourage people to use public transport and out of town car parks. But with buses taken off routes due to cut-backs and the buses themselves caught in traffic jams, is this the solution?
If you were caught in Thursdays traffic gridlock madness let us know. How long did it take you to get home that evening? What do you think can possibly be done to improve traffic movement in Preston?