Safety measures at a junction which was the scene of an horrific crash need to be imposed urgently ahead of the opening of a new supermarket,
That’s the plea from councillors relieved that no-one was injured when a 10-tonne lorry crashed into a row of shops in St Annes.
The terrifying incident happened after the wagon was in collision with two cars at the junction of Singleton Avenue and Shepherd Road and became embedded in a kitchens showroom.
Barbara Nash and former St Annes mayor Viv Willder, who both represent the area on Fylde Council, says the junction has been a problem for some time - and urgently needs better road signs, particularly with a new Booths store set to open nearby in six months’ time.
Coun Willder said: “When the road was resurfaced in that area a year or so ago we asked for better signage on Singleton Avenue to warn of the crossroads where motorists on Shepherd Road are required to give way.
“We were told by the county council that the signage was adequate but when Booths open on Heyhouses Lane in May, traffic is sure to increase substantially in that area and everything possible needs to be done to make it safe.
“A 20mph limit has been imposed in the area fairly recently but I don’t think it has made any difference.”
Coun Nash added: “I know a lot of cars speed along these roads because when we have PACT meetings there are residents telling us.
“We will have to have a look at the situation with Lancashire County Council.
“We need to see if better signs are needed. I am just thankful no-one was seriously injured.”
Emergency services closed the road for more than eight hours on Saturday to allow the building to be made safe and the wagon to be removed.
An 83-year-old woman had to be rescued by firefighters from a neighbouring property, while search dogs were called from Merseyside Fire and Rescue to ensure no-one was in the showroom.
St Annes Fire Station manager Paul Briggs said it was only luck which stopped anyone from being harmed in the incident which happened around 8.45am on Saturday.
“It is a miracle no-one has been killed.
“When you seen the impact with which the wagon has hit the shop, no-one would have stood a chance.”
The owners of the kitchen shop, Rod McKinnon and Mark Jennings, said they were trying to stay optimistic despite the incident, admitting the health of those involved in the collision was more important.
Mr McKinnon, 71, said: “We normally open around 10am – it was lucky no-one was inside any earlier.
“We actually sit near the front window, the point where the collision and the main impact was.
“Our main concern was that the people involved were not seriously injured. Had it not been a weekend it could have been a different tale.”
Mr Jennings, 54, added: “We quite often have customers coming early on a Saturday to have a look at displays - again it is very fortunate no-one was about at the time.
“We have good insurance and we will continue to trade. We will just advise people not to visit the show room for a while.”
Neighbours said low sun light down Shepherd Road was a constant problem which caused drivers to miss give way signs.
One resident, who did not wish to be named said: “It is lucky no-one was killed.
“I went to the paper shop this morning to get the lottery. I went to get my car washed and came back and all this had happened.”
A spokesman for Jewson said: “This was a serious incident and we are pleased that as far as we are aware no one was seriously hurt, although it was very distressing for anyone involved. We are co-operating fully with the police investigation into the accident and have no further details at the moment.”
Following the incident, police launched an appeal for witnesses.
PC Adam Dawson of the Road Policing Team said: “Anyone who may have witnessed the collision is urged to contact us with any information they may have that could help us to establish exactly what happened”
Anyone with information is urged to call contact Lancashire Police on 101.