NB. Certain posts include the abbreviation EToN which stands for Electronic Transfer of Notifications
Major delays in St Leonards Road today as a result of temporary traffic lights displaying red stop lights at both ends. Having been caught up in the delays, and no-one doing anything about it, I called RBWM who had no record of the works other than Virgin Media starting tomorrow. Roadworks.org had no record either. It seemed important therefore to return to the site and see what chaos was being caused.
Cars and buses alike being held up by the 'all red' traffic lights
There was no work going on at the site! The company responsible was Scottish and Southern Electricity who had obviously arranged with the contractors to erect barriers across half the road and install the traffic control signals so that when they eventually turned up they could get on with their holes. It staggers me that a utilities company can arrange for half a road to be closed off, and for lengthy queues to be caused, for an extended period - more than a day it seems - with no work in progress!!!! What is more, the RBWM had no record so one assumes no licence from them to perform the works.
I am also really annoyed with the sub-contractors who set up the barriers and the lights and then vamoosed, leaving the whole area to be reduced to chaos. Competent? I have no doubt that very many drivers were equally angry at the major inconvenience caused.
I am pleased that for a short while at least I was able to direct traffic and help them through although some drivers seemed reluctant to ignore their red light!! Others were only too pleased to do so! A call to the 'Help' number displayed at the site soon resulted in two teams from the contractors turning up and who immediately started removing all the paraphernalia that had caused the grief earlier but it would be preferable for the sub-contractors to leave someone by the roadworks for a while to ensure that all is working as it should.
A footnote. One of my gripes is that traffic control systems are often set-up poorly such that traffic from one direction is held up for ages, and traffic from the other direction suffers no delays at all. The reason is because the lights are not set to allow increased time for traffic from the 'busier end' to get through and much time is lost by the lights permitting traffic to pass through from the opposite end - when when there is no traffic there!!! The RBWM, as the authority issuing the licences, should ensure that someone is on site to ensure that the lights are set as effectively as possible - and that MEANS ADJUSTING THEM for morning and evening rush hours especially when traffic flows are very different.