Seaford wheelchair-user’s concern over ‘extremely dangerous’ road

A wheel-chair user from Seaford is calling for safety measures in the road outside his home.

Thursday, 15th April 2021, 3:04 pm
Sam Taylor in Crouch Lane

Sam Taylor, who was behind The Seaford Beach Access Campaign, said it was currently ‘extremely dangerous’ for him to exit his property into Crouch Lane.

The lane, which is a two-way street despite being narrow, has no pavement, which means the 33-year-old is led directly into the path of any oncoming vehicles when leaving home in his wheelchair or adapted car.

Earlier this year, a car had to swerve and brake hard to avoid Mr Taylor as he left his home with his dog Rupert.

Sam is forced to exit his property directly onto the road

Mr Taylor said: “I do believe that it is just a matter of time before a fatality does happen in this area, to either myself, or somebody else. Something does need to happen, sooner rather then later.”

More and more large vehicles, lorries and trucks are now using the road, he said, pointing out that it is also used by children attending the nearby school.

“There have been too many times where me and my live-in carer have witnessed very near-misses between cars, lorries and pedestrians,” he said.

Mr Taylor said he also struggles when turning back into Crouch Lane from Steyne Road, because a flint wall completely blocks his view.

Sam is forced to exit his property directly onto the road

But when he approached East Sussex Highways to ask whether mirrors could be put in place, for example on the wall of The Barn Theatre Car Park, to improve the situation, he was told this would not be possible.

He also suggested Crouch Lane could be made into a one-way street, but was told that this may encourage speeding.

Mr Taylor said he was ‘absolutely appalled’ by the response.

An East Sussex County Council spokesman said: “We are aware of the issues raised in relation to road safety on Crouch Lane in Seaford.

“The road was assessed earlier this year and does not meet the intervention criteria for traffic calming or making the road one way.

“Traffic mirrors may be permitted on private land opposite a private access, but they must not overhang the highway and obstruct vehicles, pedestrians or equestrians.

“Mirrors on or around public roads are not usually permitted. This is because experience shows that rather than improving safety, a mirror could increase safety risks.

“Drivers can misinterpret what they see and assume it is safe when it is not.

“Images may also be affected by poor weather or overgrown vegetation and mirrors can be prone to misting, dust and dirt.

“For these reasons it is not possible to install traffic mirrors on Crouch Lane.”