Concern over safety of London Colney roundabout

CONCERNED drivers have called for changes to be made to a major roundabout following a number of collisions in recent months.

The driver of a vintage car had a lucky escape at the end of December when it crashed and landed on the central reservation around 50 metres from the London Colney roundabout.

A woman was also taken to hospital with minor injuries two weeks ago after her Suzuki Jeep hit a crash barrier and rolled onto its side, landing in the carriageway (pictured).

This latest incident prompted a number of people to once again raise concerns about the roundabout. Derek Larman has blamed the layout of the junction and sees the northbound entrance as a particular problem.

He said: “The problem is that there are four lanes on the roundabout feeding, in a very short distance, into two lanes on the carriageway.

“People on the outer lane are inevitably drawn to cut the corner – it is after all the ‘natural’ line – and people who are unfamiliar with the layout find themselves on the outer of the two St Albans inner lanes of the roundabout when they want to go straight on to the north.

“Not realising this actually means that they are on the non-existent third lane of the dual carriageway, there is an inevitable squeeze between those on the London Colney side taking more than their share of the road, those on the non-existent third lane who really shouldn’t be there and those in the middle who believe (correctly) that they are in the right.”

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Another concerned driver, who lives near to the roundabout, said: “There have been many accidents at the A414 junction, all being within the first 25 metres from the roundabout.

“It always seems to be the same section being damaged and quite often hit on a number of occasions before repairs are carried out.

“As Hertfordshire Highways carries out the repairs they are well aware of the problem but apart from carrying out these regular repairs, nothing seems to have been done to prevent further accidents.

“Herts County Council will no doubt claim financial constraints prevent long term measures.”

A spokesperson for Herts Highways said that no complaints had been received from members of the public about the layout of the roundabout.

He went on: “The existing layout has been in place for the last three years and was designed to ensure motorists use the correct lanes when heading towards Hemel Hempstead and Watford, which has been largely successful.

“We have however been made aware of a number of incidents this year and although the causes of these incidents are not clear, we will initially be renewing the road markings on the roundabout to try and improve the situation. Further to this, a survey of the road surface will be carried out in the next few weeks, as a precautionary measure, to identify any further considerations.

“We encourage all motorists to observe speed limits and ensure they stay in the designated lanes on the highway network.”