Newspaper for Crossmaglen, South Armagh, Newry and Down.

Councillor calls for road safety measures at Silverbridge

There is an urgent need for traffic calming measures to be introduced along a stretch of road in Silverbridge “before someone is killed”, a local councillor has said.

Sinn Fein’s Barra Ó’Muirí has appealed to the Department of Regional Development (DRD) to install traffic calming measures on the section of the main road between Finnegan’s Nursery and Fords Cross as a matter of urgency.

He says a new crèche facility which opened last year, has led to significant increase in traffic on this stretch of the main Newry to Crossmaglen route and there have been “many near accidents”.

Revealing that he has written to DRD to request the safety measures, Councillor Ó’Muirí said: “In summer 2015, Happy Faces Day Care opened along this section of road, which has brought a whole new dynamic to the traffic.  Up to 100 children are dropped off and picked up each day, with cars and buses entering and exiting the premises all day long.  The huge problem is that traffic is still passing at up to 60mph, which has, unsurprisingly, led to many near accidents.”

The most recent incident occurred on Wednesday last when a car left the road and careered through the exterior fence of the crèche.  It was “only by the grace of God” that no one was injured, he said.

A further road safety concern is the bus stop in Silverbridge, which is located on a sharp bend, the councillor continued.

“The bridge outside Donnelly’s shop is a pick up spot for school children and everyone else travelling by Translink. It is a regular occurrence to see cars attempt to overtake parked buses while children get on and off buses, with cars coming at 60mph in the other direction,” he claimed.

“Myself and our MLA Megan Fearon have previously met with Roads Service about this issue and we are now appealing to Traffic Calming to take action immediately before there is a serious accident on this stretch of road.”