Bolt highlights “dangerous” roads

Junction at Sunny Bank Road, Leeds Road and Child Lane at Mirfield. (04020908)
Junction at Sunny Bank Road, Leeds Road and Child Lane at Mirfield. (04020908)

A former highways chief at Kirklees has slammed the poor response by utility companies to defects which he believes may make roads more dangerous.

Mirfield councillor Martyn Bolt has reported problems with water leaks coming through the road surface, which will then forms sheets of ice.

He said: “The water is tracked down the road by passing traffic, so the area potentially icing over can be quite large.

“We have one leak at the busy Sunny bank Road junction in Mirfield right on the crown of the bend which could, when icy, cause vehicles taking the corner to lose control and crash into on coming traffic.”

Coun Bolt said he reported the matter to Kirklees Highways more than a week ago and, was told it was with the utility companies. Coun Bolt said the companies had not applied to the council for a permit to close the road to do the works.

“This is preposterous,” he added. “Utility companies have emergency powers which enable them to do the work, their delays are causing danger to residents & road users.”

He said he was shocked to find that one defect in Heckmondwike had been notified to the water company more than a year ago.

Coun Bolt added: “I was taking a photo and logging more leaks using an app on my phone, and a driver stopped and told me he had been reporting the issue for more than 12 months and that contractors had come out to do tests and found chlorine in the water, suggesting it was a fresh water feed, and thus clearly Yorkshire Water problem and still it remained unsolved.

“When you think how many eyes on the ground the council still has in our road and path sweepers and other staff if they were to report defects, it would make Kirklees a better and safer place.”