Mis- (traffic) -management

Modern technology has given us many benefits, such as being able to see where road issues are causing delays. The photo below shows the GoogleMaps Traffic results for the Monday afternoon traffic tailbacks due to a set of roadworks near the Banwell Road junction on the Wellsway in Bath. (Base image, copyright Google)

SavingPublicSector

You can see the tailbacks caused (marked in blue) on Frome Road (in both directions) and the Wellsway coming out of Bath. Compare these to the complete lack of delays whatsoever coming in to Bath from Peasedown way.

This will doubtlessly be caused by a set of badly set up automatic, temporary traffic lights (yet again) and could be easily remedied by having somebody controlling the lights during the rush hours when traffic is at its most polarised. I understand contractors are usually supposed to have manual control over the lights at peak times as part of their licence to work on the highway, but it clearly isn’t happening. Now if a bus operator with a very cheap computer can figure this out, why is it such rocket science for Bath and North East Somerset’s various traffic departments to manage it?

Issues in Odd Down are not a new problem and were one of the reasons for a local independent operator to cease their successful service on the route. Perhaps it is time that some of those involved in traffic and highways at B&NES to start earning their salaries and do some proper monitoring and enforcement, because this sort of situation is not acceptable. Passengers at Midsomer Norton waiting for a bus to Wells or Paulton will not accept that the bus has been delayed by 30 minutes by traffic queues in Bath (which is quite possible where the Odd Down Red Lion roundabout is involved). This will always be the fault of the bus company in the eyes of the passenger.

So next time your local council says they do “all they can” to support bus services. Ask them if they actually monitor contractors working on the highway to ensure they’re not causing totally unneccesary delays.

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