Drivers in Worcester facing seven weeks of gridlock

DELAYS: The scene in Bath Road, Worcester yesterday

Drivers in Worcester facing seven weeks of gridlock

Drivers in Worcester facing seven weeks of gridlock

Drivers in Worcester facing seven weeks of gridlock

Drivers in Worcester facing seven weeks of gridlock

First published in News Malvern Gazette: Tom Edwards by , Political Reporter

DRIVERS in Worcester are facing seven weeks of potential gridlock - with one of the city's busiest routes being dug up.

Three-way traffic lights went up near the top of Worcester's A38 Bath Road on Monday, causing spiralling tailbacks from Norton Close all the way to The Albion pub.

An emergency gas leak, which is currently being worked on by the National Grid, meant it took some motorists 30 minutes to travel the length of the road, with tailbacks in both directions during rush hour.

The project is expected to be complete by Friday, but from Monday the National Grid will return to Bath Road to start six weeks of gas mains replacement work, saying traffic lights will again be in use in both directions along the route.

The mammoth project comes just as the schools go back, with motorists now facing delays until mid-October.

Driver Peter Griffiths, 61, from Barneshall Avenue, said: "I was trying to get up the Bath Road from the pub and it took me 25 minutes of crawling.

"Why wait until the schools are back to do this? It will end up causing chaos.

"We've put up with a lot around here, up the road there's been roadworks at the Ketch (island at the A440) since Easter."

Councillor Mike Johnson, who represents St Peter's at the city council, said: "I've seen the National Grid digging holes in the grassed verges (by the Norton turn off Bath Road) so I'd assumed they'd had reports of a gas leak.

"I got stuck in it myself on Monday, at that time it was two-way traffic lights but I see now it's three."

The National Grid says the work is "essential" following recent investigations into the gas mains.

This Monday's six-week project was scheduled before the current emergency visit to plug a leak got underway.

Spokeswoman Jane Taylor said: "A gas escape was reported to us on Monday, it's been repaired now and we've just got to backfill the road before we can remove the traffic lights.

"On September 8th a gas mains replacement job will last for around six weeks on the Bath Road."

The National Grid originally applied to start the work on Monday, September 22 but now says it wants to bring it forward by two weeks.

People in south Worcester have already suffered due to other utility works in the area in 2014.

The first three months of this year saw lengthy delays around St Peter's because of a £180,000 water pipes replacement scheme by Severn Trent.

Comments (13)

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9:29am Wed 3 Sep 14

denon says...

Nice to know new pipes to stop leaks or explosions
Nice to know new pipes to stop leaks or explosions denon
  • Score: 3

9:34am Wed 3 Sep 14

GaseousClay says...

denon wrote:
Nice to know new pipes to stop leaks or explosions
"Peter Griffiths, 61, from Barneshall Avenue, said: "I was trying to get up the Bath Road from the pub and it took me 25 minutes of crawling."

You wanna take it with a bit more water fella..
[quote][p][bold]denon[/bold] wrote: Nice to know new pipes to stop leaks or explosions[/p][/quote]"Peter Griffiths, 61, from Barneshall Avenue, said: "I was trying to get up the Bath Road from the pub and it took me 25 minutes of crawling." You wanna take it with a bit more water fella.. GaseousClay
  • Score: 48

10:14am Wed 3 Sep 14

CJH says...

Headline should read ANOTHER 7 weeks of gridlock...
Headline should read ANOTHER 7 weeks of gridlock... CJH
  • Score: 11

10:26am Wed 3 Sep 14

annie2 says...

So glad ive left that grid locked city !
So glad ive left that grid locked city ! annie2
  • Score: -11

10:26am Wed 3 Sep 14

annie2 says...

So glad ive left this grid locked city!
So glad ive left this grid locked city! annie2
  • Score: -8

10:54am Wed 3 Sep 14

Tobster says...

"Why wait until the schools are back to do this?"

Yeah, inanimate gas leak. Why did you wait?
"Why wait until the schools are back to do this?" Yeah, inanimate gas leak. Why did you wait? Tobster
  • Score: 16

11:15am Wed 3 Sep 14

WJS1950 says...

I can understand the road needing to be dug up in the event of an emergency, as was the case on Monday. But what I find hard to fathom is why the mains replacement work, which isn't an emergency, wasn't done during the school holidays when the road was quieter! The A38 is a major route in and out of Worcester and yet it seems National Grid have been given permission by the highways department to start work next week and cause chaos.

Why the hell didn't the highways staff arrange for these work to commence 7 weeks ago? They're the highway authority so they have the ability to decide who works on the roads and when. This is just another example of total and utter incompetence from our highways department. But nothing will change, they've buggered things up time and time again before and they'll continue to do the same in the future. This department is well and truly staffed by incompetent oafs.
I can understand the road needing to be dug up in the event of an emergency, as was the case on Monday. But what I find hard to fathom is why the mains replacement work, which isn't an emergency, wasn't done during the school holidays when the road was quieter! The A38 is a major route in and out of Worcester and yet it seems National Grid have been given permission by the highways department to start work next week and cause chaos. Why the hell didn't the highways staff arrange for these work to commence 7 weeks ago? They're the highway authority so they have the ability to decide who works on the roads and when. This is just another example of total and utter incompetence from our highways department. But nothing will change, they've buggered things up time and time again before and they'll continue to do the same in the future. This department is well and truly staffed by incompetent oafs. WJS1950
  • Score: 18

11:44am Wed 3 Sep 14

Sproutacus says...

What I can't understand is that the work is being carried out in 'Norton Road' yet the lights are in Bath Road?
It has become increasingly common for works carried out on pavements or off road to throw up temporary traffic lights as a matter of course, often days before work begins.
If the major contruction at the Ketch can employ coning, narrowing roads and contra-flow that only 'slows' not stops traffic why can't the grid?
What I can't understand is that the work is being carried out in 'Norton Road' yet the lights are in Bath Road? It has become increasingly common for works carried out on pavements or off road to throw up temporary traffic lights as a matter of course, often days before work begins. If the major contruction at the Ketch can employ coning, narrowing roads and contra-flow that only 'slows' not stops traffic why can't the grid? Sproutacus
  • Score: 18

12:33pm Wed 3 Sep 14

sitting on the fence gives you piles says...

annie2 wrote:
So glad ive left that grid locked city !
We are also glad!
[quote][p][bold]annie2[/bold] wrote: So glad ive left that grid locked city ![/p][/quote]We are also glad! sitting on the fence gives you piles
  • Score: 15

3:43pm Wed 3 Sep 14

PrivateSi says...

Need another road bridge for starters...
Need another road bridge for starters... PrivateSi
  • Score: 5

9:47pm Wed 3 Sep 14

tracy_young@btinternet.com says...

Some prior notice of the works starting 8th September would have been nice. I still have to get to work on time so I am forced to leave the house at 7.30 am and don't get home till well after 6pm... All because of traffic lights. Why couldn't the pre planned work have been done in the school holidays when there was less traffic on the roads. .. typical bad planning!
Some prior notice of the works starting 8th September would have been nice. I still have to get to work on time so I am forced to leave the house at 7.30 am and don't get home till well after 6pm... All because of traffic lights. Why couldn't the pre planned work have been done in the school holidays when there was less traffic on the roads. .. typical bad planning! tracy_young@btinternet.com
  • Score: 8

11:00pm Wed 3 Sep 14

Budweis-her says...

I'm sure Peter Griffiths wouldn't be complaining about 25 minutes of invonvenience if the leaking gas main exploded and blew up his house. He's be moaning about why it hadn't been repaired then.

As for doing the work in the school holidays...well this may come as a disappointment to some of you but the world doesn't revolve around children. It won't hurt them to walk once in a while.
I'm sure Peter Griffiths wouldn't be complaining about 25 minutes of invonvenience if the leaking gas main exploded and blew up his house. He's be moaning about why it hadn't been repaired then. As for doing the work in the school holidays...well this may come as a disappointment to some of you but the world doesn't revolve around children. It won't hurt them to walk once in a while. Budweis-her
  • Score: 8

12:43pm Thu 4 Sep 14

Marant says...

I was heading south so got on the M5 at Junction 7 at 6.30am on Wednesday morning. Already there was a steady stream of traffic heading to the motorway, and all of it was heading north towards Birmingham. And yet the powers that be still seem to think it's a good idea to force more homes into south Worcestershire and direct the employment land to the Black Country? The jobs need to be HERE, that's the only way to stop traffic!
I was heading south so got on the M5 at Junction 7 at 6.30am on Wednesday morning. Already there was a steady stream of traffic heading to the motorway, and all of it was heading north towards Birmingham. And yet the powers that be still seem to think it's a good idea to force more homes into south Worcestershire and direct the employment land to the Black Country? The jobs need to be HERE, that's the only way to stop traffic! Marant
  • Score: 10
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