Highways Agency criticised over A66 closure

The Northern Echo: The A66 at Long Newton on September 26 The A66 at Long Newton on September 26

THE Highways Agency was criticised again today after the A66 was closed for the third time in six weeks.

The vital link road connecting Teesside to the A1 was closed overnight from Monday and throughout the morning rush hour today. 

MP Ian Swales once again criticised the agency pointing out the road was closed at a junction at Long Newton, between Darlington and Stockton, which was improved at a cost of £12m just four years ago.

The same junction was also closed after heavy downpours in late September and again two weeks later.

Mr Swales, Liberal Democrat MP for Redcar, said: “This is important for the entire Tees Valley economy. I’d like to know exactly who is accountable and, as far as I’m concerned, the public shouldn’t pay for any more work to improve the drainage in that area."

A spokeswoman for the Highways Agency pointed out the amount of rain was exceptional. Rain had come from nearby fields overloading the highway drainage. The drainage system had in fact been designed to the Highways Agency’s standards.

There were major delays on the A689 road to Hartlepool and the A19 on Teesside today, and the Christmas light switch-on event in Middlesbrough was cancelled.

Comments (6)

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7:51pm Tue 27 Nov 12

Idontknowaboutyoubut says...

What kind of idiot points the finger of blame over the flooding,given the rainfall we have experienced this year.As a pensioner,I cannot recall anything quite as bad as it is.Agency's are not God,Mr.Swales.They dont have the power to stop the rain.I suggest you stop whingeing,and do something positive to help those who need it.
What kind of idiot points the finger of blame over the flooding,given the rainfall we have experienced this year.As a pensioner,I cannot recall anything quite as bad as it is.Agency's are not God,Mr.Swales.They dont have the power to stop the rain.I suggest you stop whingeing,and do something positive to help those who need it. Idontknowaboutyoubut

8:02pm Tue 27 Nov 12

Apocalypse Later says...

Nutter, of course someone is at fault here.
The work to this junction has only been done recentlly, it never used to flood like this beforehand.
When it flooded earlier this year they probably scratched their backsides for a while before deciding that it would not rain as much as it did then, thus doing jack all about it.
Nutter, of course someone is at fault here. The work to this junction has only been done recentlly, it never used to flood like this beforehand. When it flooded earlier this year they probably scratched their backsides for a while before deciding that it would not rain as much as it did then, thus doing jack all about it. Apocalypse Later

11:17pm Tue 27 Nov 12

5under1and says...

Yep when are our public servants going to do something about this! Each time this happens must cost a hell of a lot of money. The deficit will never be paid off at this rate.
Yep when are our public servants going to do something about this! Each time this happens must cost a hell of a lot of money. The deficit will never be paid off at this rate. 5under1and

1:27am Wed 28 Nov 12

Browsing says...

During heavy rainfall, the fact that roads flood should never be an issue. All flood defences should be prioritised to ensure homes don't flood even if this means diverting the rain onto roads. A flooded road is just an inconvenience.
During heavy rainfall, the fact that roads flood should never be an issue. All flood defences should be prioritised to ensure homes don't flood even if this means diverting the rain onto roads. A flooded road is just an inconvenience. Browsing

11:28am Wed 28 Nov 12

stevegg says...

Millions of pounds of taxpayers money was spent upgrading this junction on the major east/west route in the area less than 10 years ago when climate change and increased risks of flooding were well known. How did they manage to construct this project in light of that information, to replace a junction which was built 40 years previously when such climate change was scoffed at, and end up with worse drainage than before??? The engineers who designed this had clearly not done their homework.
Millions of pounds of taxpayers money was spent upgrading this junction on the major east/west route in the area less than 10 years ago when climate change and increased risks of flooding were well known. How did they manage to construct this project in light of that information, to replace a junction which was built 40 years previously when such climate change was scoffed at, and end up with worse drainage than before??? The engineers who designed this had clearly not done their homework. stevegg

1:17pm Wed 28 Nov 12

loan_star says...

Apocalypse Later wrote:
Nutter, of course someone is at fault here.
The work to this junction has only been done recentlly, it never used to flood like this beforehand.
When it flooded earlier this year they probably scratched their backsides for a while before deciding that it would not rain as much as it did then, thus doing jack all about it.
You cant have driven that route much over the years. I remember before the new junction was built that there always used to be a lot of standing water on that stretch during heavy rain.
[quote][p][bold]Apocalypse Later[/bold] wrote: Nutter, of course someone is at fault here. The work to this junction has only been done recentlly, it never used to flood like this beforehand. When it flooded earlier this year they probably scratched their backsides for a while before deciding that it would not rain as much as it did then, thus doing jack all about it.[/p][/quote]You cant have driven that route much over the years. I remember before the new junction was built that there always used to be a lot of standing water on that stretch during heavy rain. loan_star

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