Bury centre bend sees third crash in four months

Sunday's accident on the Southgate Road bend ANL-151215-152538001
Sunday's accident on the Southgate Road bend ANL-151215-152538001

A bend in the heart of Bury St Edmunds may be redesigned after three accidents in four months, in spite of a 20 limit.

Southgate Area Association (SAA) had already met with its county councillors and a county highways manager when the latest crash happened on Sunday night, leaving a car wedged between a bollard and parked cars on the bend from St Mary’s Square to Southgate Street.

Keith Horton, of SAA, said: “Bollards have been uprooted across the footway in the two previous collisions.

“It has only been a matter of luck that no pedestrian was in the immediate location of these collisions at the time they occurred or serious injury would have been certain.

“The footway in Southgate Street is well-used by pedestrians of all ages, including families with pushchairs and young children.”

Division county councillor David Nettleton said: “There are too many accidents there for it to be blamed on individual drivers. We have to deal with the road itself so it’s only the freak incident.”

He felt drivers going through the open square were going faster than they thought when they entered the narrow bend.

Fellow councillor Mark Ereira said: “If I look across the whole Town Division it seems to be that bend that presents dangers to residents and road users in a way no other bend does.

“If you watch drivers coming round it, people struggle, especially if they’re not used to it, are inexperienced drivers of under the influence of something.”

He has offered some of his locality budget for repeater 20mph signs.

A Suffolk County Council spokesman said the area highways manager was looking at options to encourage drivers to slow down before the bend.