A group in Long Stratton have angrily spoken out against road users driving illegally on a restricted access road, amid fears over the safety of the children and pedestrians walking in the area.
Residents have lobbied for councils and police to take action after reports of many drivers breaking the law by using St Michael’s Road, a street with a 20 mph speed limit and a resident-only access limitation for vehicles, as a “rat run” to avoid rush hour traffic in the early morning and late afternoon periods.
Stephen Lansdell, of St Michael’s Road, said the issue had been persistently occurring for several years, but claimed the response from the local authorities had, up to now, proved ineffective.
“I really feel that we need a show of presence in our road,” said Mr Lansdell, an emergency paramedic.
“The 20 mph limit and the access only restrictions are becoming a joke.
“This continued abuse of the law is putting the residents and our children at risk.
“It wouldn’t take much, just a little reinforcement of the law now and again so these repeat offenders understand the laws of our country.”
The residents have also raised their concerns with Long Stratton Parish Council.
Insp Mike Britton, policing commander for Diss, said Norfolk Police had taken enforcement measures, and communicated with the major employers in Long Stratton, including South Norfolk Council, Saffron Housing and the local schools.
However, he said these efforts could only provide a short-term fix, and added that a long-term change to the architecture of the road, such as the introduction of a barrier, would be needed – although he emphasised this was a highways authority matter and not for the police to decide.
“It’s really a joint approach that’s needed to resolve it,” said Insp Britton.
“Unfortunately, enforcement is not the solution. To date, none of that has had a long-term impact.
“Therefore, the next kind of long-term plan is to look at it (the road) architecturally.”