With the approach of summer it is interesting to see how different councils approach grass cutting and the effects that unattended grass can have on road safety. For three years it has been necessary to remind Durham County Council of their responsibility to cut grass because of the impact on road safety.

On previous occasions, the threat of members of the public cutting the grass on behalf of the council has motivated the council to take remedial action, but with a policy of only cutting grass twice a year and no attempt to monitor if road visibility is being impaired, the motorist is repeatedly being put at risk.

“Reasonable foreseeability” in law ought to demand greater consideration from Council operatives where clearly the risk of accident has been considerably increased.

The photo attached clearly illustrates the indifference that both the local authorities and the police have for road safety in this regard. Perhaps this is being ignored because it is a cost to tackle this problem when council budgets are stretched, but the cost of road accidents is so large that surely it is worth spending some money on this issue? It should not be ignored.

It is also very worrying that at several roundabouts in the Durham and Sedgefield area, barriers have been erected or trees planted to purposely hamper visibility as cars approach roundabouts. I am sure that licensed road users are capable of approaching roundabouts with due care, without the local authority creating hazardous situations for the motorist to negotiate.

We at the ABD are sincere in our desire to achieve the highest levels of road safety and would ask that those in authority operate with integrity and deal with this issue.

Francis Barnish

Leave a Reply