RESIDENTS living near a crossing in Cardiff where a car crashed and turned on to its roof said it is only a matter of time before someone is killed on their road.
Three car crashes have happened at the A48 crossing in Llandaff between Insole Place and Insole Grove East since June last year.
People living on this busy stretch of road say that they frequently see cars doing well over 30mph, the designated speed limit there.
The most recent crash occurred on Monday February 27.
“We just heard an almighty crash like we do,” said Natalie Lawson, who lives on Western Avenue.
“I jumped up, came down, grabbed my phone, went out, rang the police and an ambulance.
“The [crash] before that went on top of [the central reservation]. It is just a lethal crossing.
“My worry is that someone is going to get killed.”
Natalie, 44, has lived on Western Avenue since 2018 and said she sometimes sees people driving at between 60mph and 80mph along the road.
Judie Hitchen, who lives on Insole Grove West said she is also worried that it is only a matter of time before someone is killed as a result of a car crash on Western Avenue.
Judie, 47, said: “None of the traffic slows down around the crossing area and standing in the middle is hairy while you are waiting for the lights to change on either side.”
Judie and Natalie both explained how the traffic light system on the A48 at Insole Place doesn’t allow a pedestrian to cross the road in one go.
The two women, both mothers, also said that they worry about the safety of school children crossing the road when the railings have been removed from the central reservation following a car crash.
When asked how she feels about her children using the Insole Place crossing, Judie said she is “hugely worried”, adding: “The buttons for them to press to use the crossing is right next to the traffic.
“It is not even that wide in the centre of the carriageways, so we are always concious of crossing that road because you do have to stop in the middle.
“Really, it would be much safer if you could cross all the way with one button press.”
“It is a long, straight stretch of road with a crossing in the middle and people are just belting along it.”
Residents and one of the Cardiff Council ward members for Llandaff, Cllr Sean Driscoll, have called for speed cameras to be introduced along Western Avenue to curb the issue.
Francesca Rees, 31, uses the same crossing. She said: “Walking across that road, I do feel very unsafe.
“My children are getting to the age now where they want to go to the shop and they think that because it is a crossing area it is safe, but I won’t allow them to go across Western Avenue.
“I am that concerned that I won’t allow them to go to our local shop… just because of the road. I don’t believe there are any safe crossing to take to cross that road.”
When asked about Western Avenue and the crossing next to Insole Place, resident James Madden, 39, said: “It is quite a dangerous road.
“To be honest with you, yeah, I feel unsafe.”
Welsh Government legislation to lower the default speed limit on residential roads and busy pedestrian streets from 30 mph to 20 mph was approved by the Senedd in July 2021.
Following this legislative change, local authorities have been tasked with adopting it through a Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) before the law comes into force on September 17.
A TRO is a legal document which is used to control the use of a highway network. According to the Welsh Government, local authorities will decide which roads should retain the 30 mph limit.
The section of the A48 between Waungron Road and Insole Place is part of one of the stretches of road that Cardiff Council has put forward to be an exception to the 20mph speed limit.
James, who lives on Western Avenue, said: “I would say they need to look again at that.
“Only a couple of days ago, the fencing down here by the lights, it is only recently that that has been repaired.”
Local councillor, Cllr Sean Driscoll, said he welcomed a number of measures introduced along Western Avenue like a reduction in the speed limit from 40mph to 30mph.
However, he added: “Despite the speed reduction, plus the additional signage, there have still been a number of serious accidents where sadly people have been seriously injured.
“Residents are really concerned that traffic continues to speed along Western Avenue unchecked.
“They also feel that the protective barriers on the crossing at Insole Grove East have been totally destroyed by speeding vehicles on a number of occasions.
“Despite assurances from our Highways team, people are now questioning the safety of this crossing.
“I’m grateful to Gareth Williams of Go Safe Cymru and the police who attended a meeting with IERA residents to discuss enforcement. However, we are told by Go Safe Cymru, that 30mph repeater signs are not an option, also, because of the many trees, siting an enforcement vehicle is difficult.
“I have continued to push the council for additional measures to make it safer for all road users.
“I have requested other measures like VAS (vehicle Activated Signs).
“We know from the speed reports that many vehicles are travelling at 40, 50, 60, 70. 80 + MPH along this stretch of road.
“It’s no good reducing the speed to 30mph, if you are not going to enforce it.”
A Cardiff Council spokesperson said: “There has been three road traffic collisions relating to this pedestrian crossing on Western Avenue since June last year.
“In all three incidents, the collisions took place at night and were due to either driver error, excess speed or drink driving.
“In one case, all four occupants exited the vehicle and ran off, leaving the car abandoned. In the other two cases, there were no injuries to anyone involved in the collision.
“We ask all motorists to abide by the speed limit and the law on all roads across the city. Nevertheless, the council is working with the police and the Go Safe Partnership to address the concerns that have been raised.”