Owl says: a headache for Sidmouth’s DCC Councillor Stuart Hughes – the transport supremo.
“Town councillors in Cranbrook have voiced their concerns over motorists travelling at speed on the town’s roads.
At a meeting last week, Councillor Matt Osborn said he saw vehicles using Court Royal – which runs from Cranberry Farm pub to Tillhouse Road – as a ‘drag strip’.
The problem of high speeds in Cranbrook has been further compounded by the fact police can only legally enforce a speed limit on an ‘adopted’ road.
No roads in Cranbrook have been adopted yet, meaning any police prosecutions for speeding offences would fail.
At a town council meeting last week, Cllr Ray Bloxham said: “The Road Traffic Act covers un-adopted roads, but the police do not see it that way.
“We have a dilemma and it has cropped up many times.
“Devon County Council (DCC) has set up a forum to tackle issues with speed because we are unhappy with the way speed is monitored.”
But chief inspector Adrian Leisk, head of roads policing, told the Herald that it was untrue that police were not enforcing the law in relation to the speed limit in Cranbrook – although it was a question of whether the law permitted them to do so.
He added: “To legally enforce a speed limit on a road, a valid and legal Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) needs to be produced and published.
“This will be done by the highway authority, which in this case will be Devon County Council, after the roads are formally handed over, or adopted.
“Any prosecutions for speeding offences will fail if the TRO is not valid or present. This will obviously be applicable after the road is adopted by the highway authority.”
Mr Leisk said the process of adoption ensured that the road was compliant with regulations, and all of the necessary design and technical specifications are met.
He added: “Prior to formal adoption, the responsibility for site safety rests with the developer, who still own the roads and are responsible for their upkeep.
“This should be risk assessed and addressed as all other safety considerations on a building site.
“This can include temporary measures to reduce residual speed on the site.
“Essentially, this road is not currently ‘in the hands of the police.’”