Tag Archives: M6 roadworks

A very dangerous journey. The M6 South in Cheshire

4 Oct

We had a delightful day out visiting relatives in Liverpool yesterday. On our way home, we stopped off at IKEA., Warrington then headed for the M6. We should have chosen the more scenic, slower? route down the A49. It would almost certainly have been safer.

There was a lengthy stretch of roadworks and the speed limit was restricted to 50 mph with average speed check from cameras. The workforce were protected by temporary concrete barriers which looked something like those shown above, but in sections.

In the headlights, the barriers “appeared” to resemble pavement and not vertical barriers. The colour blended perfectly with the background hard shoulder/lane. To make things far worse, the red cats eyes marking the road edge, were only visible now and then and only from the passenger side. They were invisible from the driver’s side. This made for a very “uncertain” limit to the road surface in the left hand lane and I was happy to adhere to the 50 mph limit in the dark.

Either the cats eyes had been torn out, were never installed or they were obliterated by road grime. Very poor.

The journey lasted between about 8pm and 9pm. The weather was fortunately dry and mist free. Lorries were out in force.

These lorries are stationary but imagine “packs” of up to six of them, with a car’s length or less between them but travelling at 60 mph. That is what we saw.

Also witnessed 3 artics in formation, joining from a slip road. An enormous length of moving  metal to contend with. Convoy !

Some overtaking up the inside despite clear warning signs on the overhead gantries of obstruction in the slow lane. This turned out to be a broken down car with hazards on. I hope nobody was in it. We saw at least three lorries just miss it in a closed lane!

The worst drivers seemed to be parcel delivery trucks, both 7.5 tonnes and full on HGV artics. These included Hermes and Fedex vehicles. Where was the policing? Do cameras do the job?

Bizarrely we did not get tailgated ourselves. Something I hate, but on this trip….. No.

Very weird and dangerous behaviour to witness. No wonder that almost daily, the M6 is closed due to “accidents” both North and Southbound between Keele and Sandbach and often further North.

In the days when I covered 35,000 miles a year on business, the best, most aware drivers generally were the truck drivers. Co-operating with each other and other road users to smooth the flow. I have to say that this is no longer the case.

We had to achieve Gold Standard in ROSPA driving tests with ex Police driver tuition in my job. Today? Appalling standards 24/7     Defensive Driving ? A must on today’s roads.

let's be careful