Limit HGV traffic in Ashbourne - impose a weight limit

Limit HGV traffic in Ashbourne - impose a weight limit

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Ashbourne Traffic started this petition to Derbyshire County Council

A lot is spoken of the economic impact of stopping HGVs coming through Ashbourne, Derbyshire but very little on the impact on the health and safety of the residents and visitors to our beautiful town.

HGVs have very little direct economic impact on the town (they do after all only drive through) whilst negatively impacting on everyone's experience and health.

HGVs are statistically over 5 times more likely to be involved in a road accident in built up areas simply due to their size and blind spots. Ashbourne is a historical town that wasn't built for these behemoths. The pollution caused through nitrogen dioxide emissions in town is also only getting worse and worse. 

A council report in 2018 stated that 11% of vehicles (one in ten) going through town are HGVs - is this really acceptable? The council can impose weight restrictions on vehicles over 7.5 tonnes using roads in order to: 

- to prevent damage to the highway infrastructure (carriageway, footways, street furniture) and buildings
- protect the character and environment of rural areas, villages and residential estates
- manage congestion on our roads
- reduce risks to vulnerable road users including pedestrians and cyclists

We call on the council to impose a weight limit on the roads through Ashbourne. 

One of the main reasons for not imposing limits on HGV traffic through Ashbourne has been related to the need for quarries in the Peak District to transport their product out to the wider market and the jobs that this creates.

Ashbourne Traffic points to the recently opened rail freight infrastructure in Buxton that gives these quarries a viable alternative that is also much more environmentally friendly. A strategic move to rail freight would be safer and cleaner for all. 

If there was realistically no viable alternative for local businesses to get their product to market (e.g. by rail or using alternative routes such as the A6 which is on the government's major road plan [unlike the A515]) then specific exemptions to a HGV weight limit imposed in Ashbourne could be made to protect local jobs. 

It is normal for such council weight restrictions to allow access for local deliveries and businesses. 

www.ashbournetraffic.org 

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