During a recent visit to my parents’ house in Sheffield, I was once again shocked by the difficulty and danger they experience when trying to take their car out of their drive onto the road. I experience the same problems myself in my hire car.
They live in Abbey Lane. Most of this road has a 30mph speed limit, like most urban roads, but, for some reason, this particular stretch of road, which is not a dual carriageway, has a 40mph limit.
Even more astonishing is that, on this small section of road, there are three small islands with bollards, where people may cross the road, and a T-junction (Folds Lane/Beauchief Abbey Lane, where more people turn off and on to the road than you would imagine.
Also, this section does not have double yellow lines on the whole, meaning that people can park on the road.
Usually, my parents can turn their small car round on the drive to pull out forward, but they can not always do this, nor can many of their neighbours – and unfortunately the 40mph sign is like an invitation to many drivers.
They leave the roundabout at the bottom of Bocking Lane and – heading towards a slight downslope where there is already a tendency to gather speed – they accelerate with abandon, taking advantage of this very slight time saving in 100 yards of their journey.
My parents have seen a car coming down this stretch of road having to swerve when trying to overtake another vehicle and then go down the wrong side of the road to avoid hitting a bollard, into the line of oncoming traffic.
A fatality one day seems inevitable.