FURIOUS residents have hit back at a council's "refusal" to prevent a string of cars blocking part of the A690 outside a North-East garage on an almost "daily basis."

Residents living on Durham Road in Sunderland have escalated their complaint to the ombudsman following what they say is an "embarrassing" response from Sunderland City Council.

The Local Government Ombudsman has since confirmed it has received a complaint, while the council has said it is working with the police to address concerns and a more long-term solution.

Read more: Council warned of potential 'crash' over illegally-parked cars at Sunderland garage

The Northern Echo previously reported that residents were concerned that a "deadly crash" was likely to happen if action was not taken to prevent cars from parking outside O'Connors Garage.

At the time, residents accused the council of "being scared" to take action while saying cars had been forced to make "last-minute" manoeuvres to avoid illegally-parked cars.

The Northern Echo:

Residents say cars are parked on the cycle lane and footpath on an almost daily basis 

The Northern Echo:

The council has been reported to the ombudsman, but it says it is working on a solution

But speaking to The Northern Echo, residents said they had been given no other option but to escalate a complaint against the council following their response.

Mark Stephen, who previously said the council and the garage would have a "joint-responsibility" if someone was killed or serious injured on the stretch of road, hit back.

He said: "In the council's response to the complaint, they say they have no plans to install any more street furniture to the area.

Read more: Sunderland garage accused of 'blocking' part of A690 with cars

"It has been suggested that they make the carriageway one lane, but this will only allow the garage to create space for more cars – where does it end."

Mr Stephen, who said the company-branded vehicles are often "dumped" in the left-hand lane of the A690, said: "It is effectively rewarding the garage for causing a nuisance to residents.

The Northern Echo:

Residents say company-branded vehicles are "dumped" on the A690 

"We are not getting anywhere with the council and all they're doing is saying somewhere, some time there will be plans to make changes to the road – but we don’t know when, all the while people's lives are being put at risk."

Mr Stephen, who said he had been previously made aware that the council would not install small bollards or fencing because of "funding," said residents had been left again bewildered.

He added: "Surely it's cheaper to install these than rip up the road, we'd all rather see the council put in some fencing, or something on the edge of the road to deter the garage from using it as a car park."

In response, Sunderland Council said it was aware of the parking issues next to the garage as it said it was working on preventative measures, although did not confirm what those would be.

A spokesperson said: "We are aware of the parking issues next to O'Connors garage and our Parking Services Team are currently working alongside the police to address this issue.

"The council is also seeking new measures in this area to help alleviate the parking issues and a detailed design is currently being undertaken for a proposed scheme, however the implementation of such a scheme can only commence once successful consultations have been carried out and appropriate funding secured."

A spokesperson for the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman confirmed it had received a complaint against Sunderland City Council.

The Northern Echo contacted O'Connors Garage but did not receive a response at time of publication.