Longridge road closure to remain 'for some time' as more emergency sewage works found
A road closure that was introduced in Longridge more than six weeks ago due to a sewer pipe collapse is now set to remain 'for some time' as further damage is uncovered.
Lancashire Council introduced a diversion for drivers on July 20 after United Utilities started emergency works when a sewage pipe collapsed on Inglewhite Road.
And it could now be a matter of further weeks or months until the road reopens, as workmen have found further damage that needs emergency repairs along the same stretch.
Businesses have previously hit out at the temporary closure, saying they had lost revenue and would be seeking compensation for their shortfalls.
But the council, along with United Utilities, have introduced stop and go signals at key points along the new diversion route in a bid to speed up traffic.
A United Utilities spokesperson said: “We have repaired the original section of damaged sewer pipe and the road over it will be reinstated next week. Unfortunately, it will be some time longer before Inglewhite Road can re-open because our inspections have revealed more damage a short distance away which also needs to be urgently repaired.
"We will have more information when we expose the pipe and see the extent of the work required. This must be very frustrating for local people and we’re sorry for the disruption, but it’s essential that it’s done to avoid further problems."
One local business, Anji's Emporium is pleading with impatient drivers to stick to the alternate route provided by the council, after its car park began being used as a shortcut for people who didn't want to take the diversion.
Owners warned they may have to consider closing the car park, which would be 'unfair to customers' shopping there and say those speeding cars are an 'accident waiting to happen'
But United Utilities has since responded, saying it has been liaising with the county council to agree improvements to traffic management to try to ease the congestion problems.
A spokesperson added: "We are now using manned stop/go signals at key points along the diversion route at peak times to try to keep vehicles moving. Hopefully, this will improve things for the affected business as well, and we are in touch with them to make sure we are doing all we can for them.
“In the longer term, once all repairs are complete, we will do another comprehensive inspection of the pipe to see if we can carry out further non-invasive measures to make sure this doesn’t happen again."
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