“Widen the road” calls farmer over A15 lorry slips

A farmer has called for the A15 north of Lincoln to be dualled, or the verges widened, following a string of lorry crashes.

The stretch of road has been notorious for incidents in recent years, many of which have involved overturned lorries.

The Lincolnshire Road Safety Partnership has also identified speeding as an issue on the stretch of road, and recently began work to install new average speed check cameras. 

The group has also indicated the speed limit could be reduced to 50mph in future.

In response to the news, farmer Sam Ward, who owns land either side of the A15, described the road as a “dangerous 1.5mile stretch”.

He said: “The road is too narrow and windy for wagons to go 60mph. It’s built up so as soon as verge gets wet, a lorry goes through bend, loses it back wheels and hey presto it’s in the ditch.

“If it swerves to have a near miss, they usually take out the oncoming driver which happened last summer and a chap escaped with broken shoulder.

“We have had five lorries go over or crash on same 1.5mile stretch in last two years. The latest was a load of plasterboard which sat there for five months.

“The average speed check is a start but it won’t stop lorries going 60mph and getting caught out on the bend with soft verges. Widen the road or at least stone the verges to avoid it.”

In response John Siddle from the Lincolnshire Road Safety Partnership said:

“LCC Highways have been clear that funds are not available for work on the A15 at this time.

“The digital camera opportunity came about as part of our upgrade and we expect it will slow vehicles to a safe speed. As a staged process we will monitor the situation and provide any information to Highways should they feel that lowering the speed limit on that road be necessary, however, it will remain at national speed limit at this time.”

John believes the new average speed cameras will have a positive effect, adding: “We know that drivers are more compliant with average speed cameras as they stay at the appropriate speed for longer.

“Because of that compliance less offences go through average speed cameras. Also there is less maintenance cost as it is digital and any offences are sent out via the 4G network.”

The issue on the A15 has caused a lot of debate. Elaine Knight said she believes if the A15 had been “duelled up as it was supposed to have been 20 years ago, there wouldn’t be the bad accidents or bad driving”.

Craig Allan said: “Like many main routes in Lincolnshire it needs dualling, at least in places. It’s lunacy that such a major route doesn’t have four lanes. Speed doesn’t kill, slow drivers leading to impatient overtakes kill.”

Phil Cross added that it “needs widening desperately” as when he passes “another lorry, I’m literally holding my breath expecting to see my mirror go flying.”

The work to replace the cameras was completed in June 2019 and cost around £30-60k for the whole system.

Lincolnshire Road Safety Partnership (LRSP) replaced three old cameras on a six-mile stretch the road between Caenby Corner and Kirton in Lindsey.

It believes that people will drive safer with average speed cameras, which work by measuring the time it takes for a car to get from the first camera to the last camera. It will then divide the distance between those two points by the time taken to work out the average speed that the vehicle has travelled.