South Armagh roads “an accident waiting to happen”

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Thursday, February 14th, 2019

Local Councillor Terry Hearty has warned that the current cold winter conditions are making roads such as the Glassdrummond Road near Crossmaglen as “accidents waiting to happen”.

The Slieve Gullion Councillor said, “When you live and travel on the Glassdrummond Road you know of the dangers of frost.



“The fine surface with areas full of water springs and the fact that the gullies have not been cleaned for over four years means that conditions along this road is an accident waiting to happen.”

The Sinn Féin representative explained, “Last Friday morning this road was like an ice rink, even though traffic was crawling, vehicles were still sliding. It is estimated that 300 children a day are collected or travel along this road by bus or car to their respective local primaries or schools in Crossmaglen and Newry.

“However, winter and surface conditions mean there are now many mornings that the Translink Bus cannot travel along the Glassdrummond Road due to safety concerns.”



The local Councillor continued, “I have been lobbying for years to have this road gritted and eventually the Department for Infrastructure (DfI) Roads Service agreed to what they call, secondary gritting.

“This happens when the main network is complete. However, most of the time this “secondary gritting” happens far too late and the children are in the school, when it is too late.”

“I reckon it would cost between £40 to £50 to grit this road, failure to do so is putting the lives of 300 children at risk.



“No cost can be put on a person’s life. There needs to be fresh thinking and gritting policy changes to reflect the fact that weather and climate conditions are changing.

Councillor Hearty added, “The current approach by Roads Service is outdated and is potentially endangering people.”



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