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Roads safe despite high number of West Suffolk crash deaths




The scene of a two vehicle RTC involving a car and a van on the B1106 in Fornham St Genevieve on June 4
The scene of a two vehicle RTC involving a car and a van on the B1106 in Fornham St Genevieve on June 4

The head of the county’s road policing unit has reassured motorists of road safety following an alarming number of fatal collisions in West Suffolk recently.

Geoff Buxton, 79, of Cockfield, Raymond Pryke, 83, of Thurston, Janet Machon, 79, of Ixworth, and Liam Jolly, 42, of Moreton Hall, all died following serious collisions across West Suffolk last month.

But while Chief Insp Chris Spinks, head of Norfolk and Suffolk roads policing unit, was unable to comment specifically on the ongoing investigations, he said ‘a tragic set of circumstances’ was often the difference between a slight or serious crash.

He said he did not expect last month’s accidents to impact on the county’s annual trend and warned of the dangers of looking at a snapshot of crashes over a short period of time, with the bigger picture for Suffolk actually showing a 20 per cent reduction in 2014-15 compared with 2013-14.

“Obviously one fatality is too many, but to take just a few weeks without looking at the bigger issue is flawed,” he said, adding that each serious collision resulted in a full investigation and a site visit to check for road surface or environmental problems.

“I wouldn’t want people to think the roads in Suffolk have suddenly become more dangerous, because they haven’t,” he said.

He urged drivers to take responsibility to protect themselves on the roads, by not using a phone and not speeding, for example, and said a recent drink-drive campaign had given him no cause for concern.



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