Published: October 11, 2011
Warning as parked cars block hovercrafts after seafront roadworks

Burnham-On-Sea hovercraft charity BARB has this week warned that vital minutes could be wasted in reaching beach rescues because of council delays in repainting double yellow lines outside its seafront station.

Parts of Burnham's South Esplanade were resurfaced in September, but the council has still not repainted double yellow lines across the front of the Coastguard and hovercraft stations.

Motorists have been parking vehicles there, as pictured, and wandering off - potentially preventing the life-saving Coastguard trucks and hovercrafts from leaving.

BARB Operations Manager Mike Lowe told "It is potentially serious because vital seconds or minutes could be lost by our crews having to find motorists to move their vehicles."

"During our most recent call-out last week one of the crew had to politely ask a driver to move his car as the hovercraft was about to be taken out of the station to reach an incident."

Mike added: "While we're grateful to the County Council for resurfacing the road, the double yellow lines need to be restored as quickly as possible. We reported the matter to the council last week as an urgent matter."

Harvey Siggs, Somerset County Council's Cabinet Member for Highways, told "You can’t always compensate or plan for human error."

He added that action has been demanded of the council's contractors within 24 hours.

"Anyone parking there is parked on a ‘No parking at any time’ area. We call on drivers to use their commonsense. Lives should never be put at risk unnecessarily," he said.


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