Bristol Water 'working hard' to reduce traffic problems on A38

PUBLISHED: 09:00 21 May 2017 | UPDATED: 13:41 22 May 2017

The Bristol Water Southern Resilience Scheme. Credit: Bristol Water

The Bristol Water Southern Resilience Scheme. Credit: Bristol Water

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Residents and commuters in Somerset have faced long delays on a major road link as work progresses on a £27million pipeline.

Queues at Cross Lane brought on by the Bristol Water works. Picture: Ian CalderbankQueues at Cross Lane brought on by the Bristol Water works. Picture: Ian Calderbank

Three-way traffic lights have been introduced on the A38 between Axbridge and Cross and substantial delays have been reported on the road in the past few weeks.

The works are part of Bristol Water’s Southern Resilience Scheme, which will provide a secure water supply to more than 280,000 homes across Somerset and North Somerset.

Work began in Cross Lane, where it meets the A38, on May 2, prompting regular 20-minute delays for drivers in the area.

But Bristol Water has now put in extra precautions to cope with the heavy traffic jams, and says contractors are working overtime to reduce disruption.

Bristol Water's Southern Resilience Scheme.Bristol Water's Southern Resilience Scheme.

The company’s spokesman Rob Ellis said: “The works have caused some disruption and there were long delays in the area to start with.

“We noticed this was a growing problem so we have placed more people in the area to make sure the lights are manned at all times by at least three people.

“We have also placed extra spotters up and down the A38 to keep an eye out for school buses heading to Kings of Wessex Academy, which has been very successful and prevented the students from being late to their GCSE exams.

“We have also increased our working hours so we now work longer days and weekends with the aim of trying to finish the work earlier to reduce the disruption caused.”

Bristol Water's Southern Resilience Scheme.Bristol Water's Southern Resilience Scheme.

Axbridge has had its regular bus service through the town cancelled as a result of the works, while residents have been left with only one main entrance in and out of the area.

Axbridge Mayor Pauline Ham said: “The Cross Lane junction was always going to be the problem point.

“Bristol Water is working hard to keep on schedule and do everything it can to reduce the disruption caused by the works.

“We are now in talks with First Group and Sedgemoor District Council to get our buses back.”

The work is expected to end on June 23. For more information, visit www.bristolwater.co.uk

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