HIGHWAYS bosses have underlined their determination to respond to residents’ safety concerns after a two-car collision sparked fresh calls to cut risks for both pedestrians and motorists.

Residents of Haughton in Darlington and ward councillor Chris McEwan said they feared someone would be seriously injured if Darlington Borough Council did not take action at the junction of Haughton Green and Rose Lane.

They said safety issues at the junction had become worse since the council moved a bus stop near the junction and created extra space for vehicles to park, which obscured views of the road.

Cllr McEwan, a former deputy leader of the authority, said while he appreciated council officers were facing multiple demands to improve road safety in the borough, some improvements could be introduced rapidly and at little cost to the public purse.

He said following a crash at the junction on Monday, in which no one was seriously injured, he would continue pressing council officers to prioritise work in the area, but it was important that residents played their part in improving safety by stopping parking their vehicles inconsiderately.

The Labour councillor said: “I can understand the pressure of demands the highways department is facing because they haven’t got the number of staff they had before, but residents and myself forecast something would happen at this junction.

“While there is no evidence speed played a part in the latest incident, this does highlight speed as an ongoing concern in the area. We have had police enforcement, but the only way to crack it is for the community to pull together.”

He said residents who wanted to help improve safety could also volunteer an hour of their time every month to the Community Speedwatch scheme.

Libby Kershaw-Horton, of Rose Lane, said: “It’s a nightmare. Its hard to get out off both ends. There should be a yellow box there and double yellow lines.

“I have a small child and I would hate to be in this situation. It was bad enough when the bus stop was there but now it is just cars. It’s not safe at all.”

Haughton road safety campaigner Wayne Matthews added: “Hopefully the council will act and get these double yellows put in place before someone is seriously hurt.”

Following the collision, a council spokesman said it had been asked to consider double yellow lines at the junction and would progress a scheme through the required legal process.

He said: “This process is open to objections being received. We will liaise with police to determine the circumstances surrounding the recent collision.”

The authority’s cabinet member for leisure and local environment, Councillor Paul Howell said the Conservative administration viewed road safety among its top priorities. He said: “Clearly wherever there’s an accident we need to understand if it is a one-off or a high-risk situation. If a solution is relatively inexpensive it should have been done before now.”