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Gapton Hall roundabout confusion

PUBLISHED: 10:04 16 April 2010 | UPDATED: 17:27 30 June 2010

The notorious Gapton Hall roundabout has become more perilous because of new road markings aimed at cutting confusion, it has been claimed.

Traffic has been disrupted for weeks while engineers have carried out the changes which have done nothing to defuse driver anger about mixed-up lane markings that carry muddled motorists off in another direction.

The notorious Gapton Hall roundabout has become more perilous because of new road markings aimed at cutting confusion, it has been claimed.

Traffic has been disrupted for weeks while engineers have carried out the changes which have done nothing to defuse driver anger about mixed-up lane markings that carry muddled motorists off in another direction.

The root of the problem seems to be that drivers wanting to go straight across find themselves in another filter lane and are forced to switch at the last minute.

But an effort to clarify the situation by project sponsor Julian O'Dell of the Highways Agency has only added to the puzzlement by saying that more clearer signs might “mislead overseas drivers.”

Mr O'Dell, responding to a letter from a Hopton resident, said: “Vehicles approaching the roundabout from the south in the middle lane are intended to use the middle lane on the roundabout for the straight ahead movement towards Bredyon Bridge. The lane to the left of the middle lane on the roundabout is for traffic coming from Pasteur Road as they move across the roundabout in preparation for their exit towards Breydon Bridge.

“Vehicles approaching the roundabout from the south in the outside lane are intended to turn right into Pasteur Road rather than going straight ahead. Because of current design standards we are not able to use a right turn arrow on the approach as they can mislead overseas drivers. We are only allowed to use a straight ahead arrow on the approach and then a right turn arrow on the roundabout and this has been done.”

He added that if the roadmarkings were causing confusion then the agency would consider changing the layout again.

A spokesman for the Highways Agency said: “The scheme at Gapton Hall, which has now been completed, involved installing and upgrading the traffic lights and road signs on the roundabout at Gapton Hall and the southern approach from the A12.

“Detector loops have been installed under the road surface to measure traffic flows on the approaches to the junction, prompting the lights to change as necessary.

The existing traffic signals controlling traffic from the Gapton Hall Road on to the A12 Pasteur roundabout were removed, and replaced by "Give Way" signs and road markings. In order to carry out the work lane closures were put in place on the approach to the roundabout and on the roundabout itself.”


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