Lorries keep hitting home

HAD ENOUGH Marie Kane and Chris Dodsly outside their home.
HAD ENOUGH Marie Kane and Chris Dodsly outside their home.
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Careless lorry drivers have caused thousands of pounds worth of damage to a Upper Hopton couple’s home.

The house Marie Kane and Chris Dodsly share in Hopton Lane has repeatedly been struck by vehicles turning right – despite several signs telling drivers not to do so.

To miss all those signs you really have to be half blind

More than £7,000 of damage was done to their kitchen when a lorry then got stuck turning into Northgate reversed into their home, smashing through their wall and into their kitchen.

There have been eight collisions since the couple, who recently became engaged, moved into the property eight years ago – with most occurring in the past two years.

And Marie, 47, thinks technology could partly be to blame. “We think they follow their Sat Navs up here,” she said. “They’ve either ignored the signs or not seen them. Then they’ve already made the commitment to turn and they just do it.”

The winding lane does not provide enough room for lorries to turn – the back ends of the vehicles swing out and hit the couple’s house in the process.

“If they read the signs they would know not to do that,” added Marie. “If you are the driver of a large vehicle you should have your wits about you.”

Extra signs have been put up with the help of Kirklees Council and another one is to go up right on the turning with Northgate as a final warning. Chris even painted on his own hazard stripes onto the side of the building – but they still think more needs to be done. They considered CCTV but the cost was prohibitive. They report every incident to the police.

“We check every day to see if there’s been any damage,” said Chris, 40. “You get over it but then it happens again and you get really down about it. It’s a hassle.”

They have suggested extra traffic calming measures such as traffic lights but this could prove tricky. “The trouble is the width of the road limits what Kirklees Council can do,” said Coun Vivien-Lees Hamilton, a driving instructor.

“These drivers have taken several tests, they should know to look. To miss all those signs you really have to be half blind.

“Sat Nav is a tool – you still need to rely on your own sense.”