Toome Road - ‘the roundabout of fear’

Ald. Martin Clarke with the new road signs at Toome Road and Wakehurst Road junction. INBT03-203AC
Ald. Martin Clarke with the new road signs at Toome Road and Wakehurst Road junction. INBT03-203AC

There have been calls for urgent action to reduce the risk of accident at the notorious Toome Road roundabout in Harryville.

The junction which connects Queen Street, Toome Road, Antrim Road and Wakehurst Road already has a poor reputation but due to increased traffic usage because of diversions, the potential for accidents is at an all time high.

Now, Paul Frew, the local DUP Assemblyman, has voiced his concerns having been been contacted by constituents.

“These people want something done to make this junction less dangerous. A lot of people have been involved in traffic accidents so I am adamant that there must be something that can be done to stop people being hurt.”

DUP Councillor Martin Clarke, a long term camapigner on the issue, said: “I’ve been fighting for traffic lights at the junction for more years than I can remember. A mini roundabout isn’t the answer as cars seem to sit for a short period of time before they all proceed to move at once!

“There have been a number of accidents including a garden wall being demolished. There are also a lot of cases that haven’t been reported therefore the police and Road Service aren’t getting the figures for them to measure the problem.”

Mr Clarkeadded: “A year ago I brought the subject up again for Transport NI to do a survey, they claimed that there wasn’t any more traffic than there was four years ago so they couldn’t justify spending more money. I feel that traffic lights are the answer here and that’s what I’d like to see.”

Mr Frew concluded, “The roundabout has ben the scene of numerous accidents in the past and is a daily hazard for people travelling in the area.

“Some drivers approach the junction with fear and sit until there are no more vehicles and others are so familiar with it they don’t even slow down now they just have a quick look and drive over the roundabout as if it wasn’t there.

“I have written to Transport NI asking them to investigate the issue and I am hoping that something can be done as soon as possible to avoid any major or life threatening accidents from happening here.”