Over 500 back calls for A19 safety probe

Northbound traffic at a standstill on the A19 following an incident.
Northbound traffic at a standstill on the A19 following an incident.

Police are backing our campaign calling for the Government to investigate the safety on one of South Tyneside’a main link raods.

We launched a petition calling for an inquiry into the A19 two serious collisions on the busy road - and over 500 people have signed up to back the call.

Hundreds of readers have already signed the petition and a senior police officer says that anything which improves safety is welcomed.

Figures of fatal, serious and slight injury accidents last year are still being calculated and confirmed, but initial statistics show that – between Testo’s Roundabout at Boldon and the Wolviston interchange – there were about 36 collisions involving 88 vehicles, causing 71 injuries, with six of those smashes classed as serious.

Figures for 2015 show there were three deaths, 41 serious crashes and 275 slight, with six of the serious collisions on the section between Boldon and Seaham.

There have been about 300 collisions along the full stretch of the A19 each year going back to 2011.

Chief Inspector Dave Guthrie, of Northumbria Police’s Operations Department, said: “We take public safety very seriously here at Northumbria Police, especially on our road network.

“It is a shared responsibility to keep our roads safe and our Motor Patrol Officers work tirelessly with our partners to ensure laws are adhered to and that people are driving with care and diligence.

“The A19 is often very busy and unfortunately incidents do happen on this stretch of road.

“Anything that keeps our road users and wider communities safer is a step in the right direction.”

The petition states: “The people of the North East, backed by the Sunderland Echo, Shields Gazette and Hartlepool Mail, call on the Government to carry out an inquiry into safety on the A19.

“Last year alone, there were more than 70 people injured as a result of crashes on the stretch between Wolviston and Boldon.

“This is too many collisions and it simply cannot go on.

“Added to the danger to drivers and passengers, the problems are bringing the North East and its economy to a halt - more must be done to get us moving forward.

“With the backing of North East MPs, including Easington MP Grahame Morris, we want the Department for Transport to look at this issue and take action to protect our region and its people for generations to come.”

The petition can be found by searching A19 on Change.org or via: https://goo.gl/ubdhzF