New safety measures installed along Castle Hill stretch of A21
New safety measures have been installed along the Castle Hill stretch of the A21 where two drivers died in separate crashes.
The MPs for Tunbridge Wells and Tonbridge and Malling, Greg Clark and Tom Tugendhat, had pushed Highways England for action to improve safety on the section of dual carriageway which was dualled at a cost of £70million and opened in September 2017.
There have been other crashes on the road in addition to the two fatal incidents.
Drivers have for a long time raised safety fears about the road in that area before the Tonbridge turn-off, including conditions when it rains and how the water runs or collects, and the adjacent fence.
There has also been concern about the vulnerability of people using the walking and cycling route beside the A21 in case vehicles plough through the fence.
In one of the fatal accidents, the car ended up embedded in the fence.
Tunbridge Wells dad Subhash Pai died when his car collided with roadside fencing on the London-bound carriageway of the Pembury bypass on July 27.
Highways England is now working on the design and bidding for a permanent barrier.
The upgrades include repairs to the fencing, complete cleaning and relaying of the filter drain and installation of the temporary vehicle restraint barrier.
Mr Clark said: “My successful campaign to dual the A21 from Tonbridge to Pembury has resulted in a safer, less time consuming and more environmentally friendly journey along the A21.
“However, although overall safety has improved, there have still been some tragic incidents along the Castle Hill stretch of the road and action needed to be taken.
“I welcome the additional safety measures recently installed by Highways England and will continue to support them as they look towards delivering a more permanent barrier along this stretch of the A21.”
Mr Tugendhat said: “The fence has been repaired and there has been a temporary barrier erected at the top of the dangerous section heading downhill towards Tonbridge.
“They have also completely cleaned and relayed the filter drain too. This is just a temporary solution while Highways England work on a larger scheme and I am pleased that this would provide even better protection to those using the non-motorised user route as well.”