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Anger as death road is given low priority status

PUBLISHED: 17:17 17 September 2008 | UPDATED: 10:07 23 August 2010

RESIDENTS are outraged at a decision not to reclassify a busy road were two people have been killed within the last year. At a meeting of Gravesham Joint Transportation Board last Wednesday Kent Highways deemed the reclassification of the A227 Wrotham Ro

RESIDENTS are outraged at a decision not to reclassify a busy road were two people have been killed within the last year.

At a meeting of Gravesham Joint Transportation Board last Wednesday Kent Highways deemed the reclassification of the A227 Wrotham Road to a B-road a low priority.

They made the decision despite residents' concerns over the safety of the road following two fatal accidents and a host other incidents.

In August 96-year-old Tom Hole was knocked down and killed as he attempted to cross the road outside his home on South Street and Paul Philpott, 46, of Hurst Road, Erith, was hit by a car and killed as he pulled out of the George Inn on his motorcycle in November last year.

Peter Baird, 70, of South Street, Meopham, lives just yards away from where Mr Hole was killed.

Speaking on behalf of residents, he said: "Why has KCC turned it down? As a resident no one from the council has come and approached me about this. There are going to be more accidents down this road because people are driving too fast. The road is dangerous."

The road was considered a low priority by Kent Highway's PIPKIN assessment system despite the fact that only a small section of the road which runs through Tonbridge was considered.

Kent Highways says the road will be reassessed for possible inclusion in the 2010/11 works programme and will continue to co-operate with police concerning speed enforcement measures, warning signs and other minor safety improvements.

A spokesperson for Kent Highways said: "Reclassification to a B road would not in itself make the route safer. The range of road safety improvements have already been introduced on the A227 including safety camera sites and interactive speed limit signs.

"Much of the traffic on the A227 is locally generated and it would continue to be a busy road.

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