At least once a year there is a nasty prang in the same part of Dane Valley. Always it is when a car is making a right hand turn out of Tenterden Way onto Millmead road.
The accidents are all, as far as I can tell, caused by the same thing - the complete invisibility of traffic to the right of the junction. The oncoming traffic may be invisible but so too is the turning. I have to tell people who give me a lift,
a surprise turning is coming up and they still sometimes miss it.
The total invisibility is caused by people parking on Millmead Road combined with the hill and the slight curve in the road.
There are two schools on Tenterden Way and traffic can get pretty heavy there twice a day. Surely, it can only be a matter of time until someone, possibly a child, is killed in one of these accidents.
My two sisters and mother were hurt in a crash at that junction. The doctors were very worried about youngest sister as she was pregnant at the time. Her belly was purple from bruising and they wondered if she would lose her baby.
That story has a happy ending and this Wednesday saw my niece's sixth birthday. We got lucky but luck should not be what keeps us safe on the roads.
After that, I wrote to KCC and asked for a mirror to be put up. They said no because of health and safety. If that makes sense to you, would you please explain it to me.
Next, I took the issue to TDC. At the time TDC was run by Labour who promised double yellow lines. This is far from the best solution as yellow lines are only going to make life harder for the people who live by the junction and own cars and do nothing to physically prevent people from parking there. The double yellow lines order has been stuck in development hell ever since. UKIP led TDC seem deeply unwilling to chase up on it. Here's the 2013 order from TDC to KCC which says The order was made
11th December, 2013, and its provisions will come into effect on 16th December, 2013.
So I am back at it again. KCC could put up a mirror; they could paint the junction to raise awareness of it (like they did in the lead up to the Victoria Road traffic lights); they could lower the speed limit, or they could come up with some other plan. KCC could do any one of a number of low-cost things and yet - nothing.
So I started a petition to force KCC to take action. For the petition to work it needs at least a few hundred signatures.
Last week I was featured in the local paper because of this petition ("Activist demands action at 'terrifying' junction"). The journalist reporting the story confirmed what I had seen - a litany of injuries and nasty accidents at that junction.
How long before we read of a fatality there?
It does not take long to sign the petition all you need to give is your name, postcode, and email address. I'd also appreciate it if you could share it on social media and tell your friends. KCC needs to act before someone is killed.