Extreme Budget Cuts: UK Turns Off Motorway Lights
The Transport Secretary, Philip Hammond, backed by local authorities, is planning to switch off, on a permanent basis, the lights that lid the way for motorists on three different roads: the M58 between Skelmersdale Junction 4 and Orrell Junction 6, the M65 between Dunkenhalgh Park Junction 7 and Burnley Junction 10 and the M66 between Walmersley Junction 1 to Simister Roundabout Junction 4. That is a total of 15.9 miles.
According to The Telegraph, the local authorities do not see the measure as one that might endanger traffic and the safety of the motorists. The Highways Agency says that as a result of the switch off it will save GBP206.700 a year. The measure will also, says the agency, cut CO2 and eliminate light pollution (!!!) on those portions of roads.
“Evidence so far indicates that switching off the lights hasn’t had an impact on safety,” Derek Turner, director for the Highways Agency told The Telegraph. “We are confident we can now begin to permanently switch off motorway lights at certain sites.”
“The money saved could then be used elsewhere on the Strategic Road Network where it would have a more significant safety benefit and potentially save more lives.”
The plans to switch off the lights are not seen as a tragedy by the AAA. As it happens elsewhere in the world, only few motorways have lights from one end to another, most of the light clusters being located at junctions.