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Electronic signs to make Preston and Lancashire’s roads safer

Posted on - 13th September, 2021 - 7:00am | Author - | Posted in - Fylde News, Preston News, Ribble Valley News, Roads, South Ribble News, Wyre News
MSCountyHall: (L-R) County Councillor Rob Bailey, lead member for highways and transport, and County Councillor Charlie Edwards, cabinet member for highways and transport with some of the signs at County Hall

New electronic signs are being deployed on Lancashire’s highest-casualty roads to make drivers think twice before doing anything to put themselves or others at risk.

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The ‘Variable Messaging Signs’ can be programmed remotely to deliver information to passing traffic, making them a useful tool in the campaign to make the county’s roads safer.

Lancashire County Council recently invested in four of the mobile trailers, adding to two already purchased by the Lancashire Road Safety Partnership and deployed by Lancashire Constabulary staff.

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The county council and the police are now working together to coordinate deployment of the signs along roads with historically high rates of casualties, and in locations where communities have raised concerns about safety.

County Councillor Charlie Edwards, Lancashire County Council cabinet member for highways and transport, said: “We’re always working to make our roads safer, whether by investing in safety schemes where there is a record of incidents, or with other members of the Lancashire Road Safety Partnership to carry out programmes of education and enforcement.

“People will be used to seeing these electronic signs being used to deliver a variety of useful messages to drivers, often about roadworks or other issues on the road network.

”The VMS units are mobile and versatile, and with the ability to instantly change the messages via a remote system, they are proving to be a useful tool for promoting road safety and educating road users.

“We will also consider using them as part of our response where communities have raised concerns about speeding and further assessment confirms that intervention is needed to bring down high speeds. They will also potentially prove useful if there is an emergency such as flooding which means we need to quickly inform road users of an issue ahead.”

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Lara Jones, safer roads unit manager for Lancashire Constabulary, said: “We have been deploying these units around the county for just under 3 years and they have been invaluable on routes where concerns around excess speed have been raised by local residents or where our traffic managers believe a safety message will have a positive influence on driver behaviour.

“When used to remind motorists of the speed limit we routinely experience significant reductions in vehicles exceeding the limit, so they clearly work.

“We are progressing a joint deployment programme with Lancashire County Council to ensure the units are located in areas where they will have the most impact.”

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