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Journalist calls for tractors to be banned from 'fast-flowing' main road after crashes


An ’outspoken’ journalist has called for tractors to be banned from a main road in Wales after a number of serious crashes.

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Daily Post columnist Judith Phillips was responding to an accident on the A55 last week involving a tractor and a van.


North Wales Police closed the eastbound carriageway for more than two hours after both vehicles overturned - with two men being taken to hospital with minor injuries.


She wrote: "It’s not been a good few weeks for crash on the A55. Why does it appear that little is being done to tackle the real issues behind the accidents?


"Friday’s crash again involved a tractor and another vehicle. This is not the first time, by any means, that this type of crash has occured, and I remember a few years back a particularly tragic accident which led to loss of life.


"A few weeks ago I was travelling along the A55 eastbound, and not very far away from the spot where Friday’s accident occured, spotted a tractor towing a trailer some distance in front of me in the inside lane.


"Tractors, by their very nature, are comparatively slow moving, and I’d estimate that this one was doing between 30 and 40mph which meant that as the road was very busy at that time, there was a tailback behind it in the inside lane, and vehicles were trying to move out into the overtaking lane even though there wasn’t really space for them to do so - causing several near misses.


"In the past, I have also witnessed other near accidents when fast-moving vehicles have rounded one of the A55's many curves, to find a tractor moving at snail's pace in from of them - causing them to apply their brakes sharply with the possibility that other vehicles could pile up behind them.


"I don't know the reasons for last week's crash but I do think the principle of slow moving tractors using the A55 needs to be addressed. Obviously this is an expressway, not a motorway, so as it stands they are not excluded, but surely this is an issue that needs to be tackled?


"I understand farmers and agri contractors needs to move between areas of agricultural land by using the highways, but surely a fast moving road, which at peak times is incredibly busy, is not the best place for them to be.


"Meanwhile, I wish those injured in Friday's accident a speedy recovery while crossing my fingers that any investigation will come up with recommendations which might help to make the A55 a safer road. I'm not holding my breath though."


Farmers have already taken to social media in response to the column.



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