Oxford

Barriers to stop 'irresponsible' drivers during A417 closure

A417 by Challow bridge Image copyright Google
Image caption Network Rail has closed the A417 at Challow near Wantage until December

Water-filled barriers will be installed on an Oxfordshire road to stop motorists ignoring closure signs.

Oxfordshire County Council said it was installing the barriers in Cow Lane, Denchworth, because it was "not suitable" as a diversion during the closure of the A417 at Challow.

It said closure signs on the road had been "deliberately removed".

Network Rail is building a higher bridge for electrification of the Great Western Mainline during the closure.

'Not safe'

David Nimmo Smith, cabinet member for highways, said the barriers in Cow Lane were a "last resort".

"Unfortunately the behaviour of some motorists has left us with no choice but to put up a physical barrier," he said.

"This is a minor route used regularly by pedestrians and horse riders, and it just isn't safe as a rush-hour diversion for large numbers of vehicles.

"But people aren't taking heed of the signs, so we're having to stop them by other means."

The move comes after villagers raised concerns about drivers ignoring road closure signs because they did not want to follow the diversion.

The A417 is due to remain closed until early December.

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