Heavy HS2 deliveries spark safety concerns - The Coventry Observer

Heavy HS2 deliveries spark safety concerns

Coventry Editorial 11th Feb, 2024   0

A SOLIHULL resident has warned articulated lorries from HS2 travelling down Windmill Lane was an ‘accident waiting to happen’.

The road, in Balsall Common, is narrow, and Jeanette McGarry is concerned many lorries travelling down the road are over the weight restrictions.

HS2 has a haul road strategy which means it has built a network of dedicated construction roads linking the construction sites to minimise the number of lorries on public roads.

Between Berkswell and Burton Green, a ‘green tunnel’ has been built.

The route Ms McGarry says the lorries are taking – to transport 18metre long beams to the site – includes Windmill Lane, home to the Grade II listed Berkswell Windmill.

She said: “Solihull Council staff confirmed the lorries started driving down Windmill Lane last week and would continue to for a further nine days.

“It is horrendous- Windmill Lane is a narrow country lane.

“They are extra long lorries – the type that take up two lanes on the motorway and that is why they have an escort and are carrying 18m concrete beams- that’s 54ft long and the lorries are piled high.

“I am extremely concerned by the weight of these fully loaded vehicles as it is potentially damaging the Windmill’s foundations and could be causing even more pot holes.”

Ms McGarry said Solihull Council was unable to give her the weight of the loaded articulated lorries.

“There are weight limits for large loaded lorries and SMBC’s Trading Standards experts are supposed to enforce this.

“We are worried about the grass verges being churned up and trees and hedges being damaged. The birds are just starting to nest.”

A spokesperson for HS2 has said they were taking precautions to ensure there was minimal impact.

“We take our responsibilities to local communities very seriously.

“We’ve built haul roads linking our constructions sites in the region, which means the majority of HS2 construction traffic doesn’t travel on local roads.

“In very occasional circumstances, a small number of abnormal loads need to be transported on local roads that we would not normally use.

“To support construction of a ‘green tunnel’ between Berkswell and Burton Green, we’ve agreed permission from the police and Solihull and Warwickshire Councils to bring two lorries per day to site via Windmill Lane until the February 9.”


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