emotional plea for wind farm to be halted due to road safety
woman whose husband was killed by a speeding motorist near Burnham-On-Sea
has this week made an impassioned plea for road safety concerns
to halt a proposed wind farm.
Ireland, whose husband Gordon was killed in a collision
with a car while crossing the A38 in Rooksbridge in 2008,
told Tuesday's appeal hearing into the Pilrow wind farm that the
planned 130 metre-tall wind turbines would threaten road safety.
pictured with fellow road safety campaigner David Maund, made
the comments during a packed public meeting in East Huntspill
audience of 100 local people listened in complete silence as Pat
outlined her emotional argument, before bursting into loud applause
at the end, defying Planning Inspector Paul Jackson who had asked
for no noise from the audience.
told the meeting: "Despite
the claims that the wind farm will not be a distraction to motorists,
I believe human nature, being naturally curious, will result in
motorists being distracted. These turbines will be very close
to the M5, one of the busiest motorways, especially during the
summer holiday season. Sedgemoor Services is in close proximity
to the proposed wind farm. Vehicles leaving and joining the services
on an extremely congested section of the motorway result in several
accidents. The additional distraction of the wind farm can only
make things worse."
am also concerned about the increase in HGV movements along the
A38 during the construction phase. Much of this traffic will be
lorries transporting aggregate from the quarries around Cheddar,
using the A38 through the village of Rooksbridge. Speaking as
a local resident and a motorist, it is common place for these
'quarry lorries' to travel at excessive speed and in an intimidatory
years ago this January, my husband whilst crossing the A38 in
Rooksbridge, was killed by a speeding motorist. That morning,
my husband became a number on a piece of paper, a mere statistic
and I became a widow. Behind these statistics there is a human
story, a tragic story of pain, anguish, grief, tears and anger.
No statistic can convey this human tragedy."
anyone can say or even think that the A38 is not dangerous should
put themselves in my position. I know first hand how dangerous
the road is. I live in the village of Rooksbridge which as I have
already said has a Post Office, Public House and a Garage. Most
people use the Post Office at least once a week, I know of some
who visit every day for their paper. Obviously this means that
most everyone has to cross the A38."
husband was one of the nicest men you could wish to meet. He was
a kind, loving and loyal husband who put his family before anything
else. We had only lived in Rooksbridge for six months and we had
received two letters addressed to the original owner. It was Friday
4th January 2008 and we decided to go shopping to get extra things
for our new home and my husband said he would take the letters
with him and put them through his letterbox. We left later than
originally planned and my husband went first into the Post Office."
he was there, I decided to start putting the address on the letters
so that he could leave them at the post office instead of having
to cross the road. Being the kind man he was, when he returned
he said 'it won't take me a minute'. I replied 'yes but you know
how dangerous this road is... 'Yes' he replied, but you know how
careful I am'."
then said 'shan't be a sec!' That was the last words he spoke
to me because a car decided to overtake coming into the 30 mph
limit, overtaking a car and an HGV, suddenly saw Gordon and although
putting his brakes on, hit him at 57 mph. I ran across the road
to see Gordon lying in the road with the impact being so hard
both his shoes were off and one of his socks."
was screaming his name, but could see he was dead. His eyes were
open and they were grey. I knew he was dead then as he normally
had such bright twinkling eyes."
can assure everyone that the A38 is extremely dangerous and anyone
who disagrees with this statement needs to lose someone close
to them and then they would change their minds."
increased HGV movements, associated with the construction of this
proposal, will only make an unsafe road even more dangerous. I
would not want anyone to experience the ongoing anguish which
I have suffered since my husband was killed, I do not want to
see a child's life suddenly taken away by a speeding HGV. I strongly
urge the Inspector to recommend refusal of this planning appeal."
runs a registered charity 'Lights for Life', an organisation which
campaigns tirelessly to improve road safety in the village of