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New signs on the way for A31
HAMPSHIRE Highways are designing signs for parts of the A31 to warn drivers of tricky spots along the route.
But campaigners, whose hopes for a 50mph speed limit on this notorious stretch of road were dashed last year, do not think these safety measures go far enough.
Ringwood councillor Michael Thierry met with transport minister Stephen Hammond last May.
At the time, the minister said he was “minded” to give the go-ahead to a trial of a 50mph limit on the A31, but in August he said the 70mph limit would stay.
Cllr Thierry said: “I think the evidence is overwhelming that the A31 is a difficult road.
“Speed is an element there although I know that many people disagree with me. People come off the end of the motorway and still have a motorway attitude.”
He said he would await details on the cause of Wednesday’s crash, but said the road needed looking at from Cadnam right along its length.
New Forest West MP Desmond Swayne said: “I’m very concerned to hear that another person has died on that stretch of road and it must have been a ghastly experience for those stuck there. I hope that there’s a full analysis of exactly what happened.”
A Highways Agency spokesman added: “As a result of a review of signage on the A31 between Picket Post and Ashley Heath near Ringwood, we are currently designing signs to enhance awareness and provide better information. We are on schedule to make these improvements by the end of 2014 at the latest.”
Colin Draper, from the Verderers, said police and agisters were investigating what happened.
“We know that there was a pony involved and it appears to have got on to the carriageway from the forest. We’re obviously very anxious to know how it got there, but at the moment we just don’t know.”
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