Durham County Council are proposing to remove street lights from Haswell. We want your opinion and your say on this matter. Below are some useful links with further information about the area in Haswell which will be affected by this scheme. Please do not hesitate to contact the Council with you views on the matter using our ‘Contact Us’ page. Your views will be forwarded onto Durham County Council on Wednesday 25th January 2017.
A report detailing the affected area:
Traffic Assets Section Proposed Removal of Street Lighting Road Safety Review
Consultation on proposal to remove street lights:
Street Lighting Energy Reduction Programme
Links to Durham County Council’s meetings regarding the scheme:
Regarding the policy of street lighting; I can advise that the Council’s proposal to remove the street lighting is part of the on-going Street Lighting Energy Reduction Project which was approved by the Council’s Cabinet on 12 December 2012. Please find link to the report: (See item 6)
Street Lighting Policy
The Street Lighting Policy which facilitates these removals was approved by the Council’s Cabinet on 20 November 2013 following extensive public consultation. Please find link to the report:(See item 7)
Below are the details about the scheme from Durham County Council:
This “invest to save” project involves the removal of street lights which are not required by British Standards where it is safe to do so.
The project will achieve significant savings in energy and maintenance costs that will help to meet the unprecedented reductions in central government funding. The project will also contribute to a reduction in the Council’s carbon emissions.
The project originally planned 7,000 removals based on a high level desktop assessment. However, following more detailed analysis including risk assessments less than 4,000 street lights will be removed. This demonstrates the Council’s commitment to only removing street lights where it is safe to do so.
The report states “Where there is existing street lighting that is not specifically required by the Street Lighting Policy then this will be removed where it is safe to do so, based on a risk assessment of road safety and the fear of crime and following consultation with local Elected Members, Town and Parish Councils where applicable”.
No street lights will be removed in residential areas, roundabouts, major junctions or where there are proven road safety and crime issues under this policy.
In relation to the comments regarding the effect de-illumination will have on the residents of Haswell Plough; it will be an issue personal to each resident in how they adapt to the changing characteristics of the affected section of the road. Whilst the revised policy takes account of the ‘fear of crime’ as part of the assessment, the recorded statistics for this area predominantly occur in the lit residential areas at either end, and outside of the proposed works.
The policy aligns the provision of street lighting in County Durham with British Standards in line with most other Councils in the United Kingdom.
Road Safety Risk Assessment
The Council has commissioned independent road safety auditors to carry out robust and detailed road safety risk assessments at each site where street lighting has been proposed for removal in accordance with the above policy.
The risk assessment includes a detailed analysis of all Personal Injury Accidents (PIA’s) which have been recorded by Durham Constabulary covering a five year period. In addition, details of fatal road traffic collisions are analysed covering a ten year period.
The risk assessment process includes visiting the site and walking the route allowing for a detailed assessment of the character of the road, its environment, the condition of the existing traffic signs and road markings. The risk assessment identifies any potential hazards to highway users and considers if these can be mitigated.
The risk assessment also includes, where appropriate, the road safety auditor liaising with various teams within the Council in respect to observations relating to walking routes to schools, cycling and public rights of way.
If the risk assessment identifies any significant road safety issues that cannot be mitigated then the Council does not proceed with the removal.
In this particular proposal, the identified mitigation works are included in the attached site report 271B, which comprise mainly of refreshing of road markings and provision of additional signage to warn approaching vehicles of possible pedestrians at the Northbound bus stop location. These would be installed before any street light removals taking place.