‘Fast and furious’ road’s defibrillator aims to save lives

A new defibrillator has been placed alongside a section of road near Market Drayton named as one of England's most dangerous.

Staff member Amelia Fleet with the defibrillator at The Four Alls Inn
Staff member Amelia Fleet with the defibrillator at The Four Alls Inn

Sutton upon Tern Parish Council has invested in the life-saving equipment as part of the campaign for a safer A529.

It can be accessed on the side of the Four Alls Inn at Woodseaves and is fully visible from the road.

The road was recognised as one of the country's most dangerous roads in the 2016 EuroRAP Risk Ratings Report.

In the five years prior to 2018, five people died and more than 100 were injured while travelling on the road.

One of several accidents on the road

Data shows there were 77 reported collisions and 119 people injured between Hinstock and Audlem. This led Shropshire Council to apply for £3.8 million from the Department of Transport to make the road safer.

Councillor Allison Jackson, who is chair of Sutton upon Tern Parish Council, said: “The parish council has been keen to invest in a defibrillator on the A529 for a very long time as many parishioners see this as an important piece of equipment for a road that is sometimes very fast and furious. If we are able to safe one life it will have been worth the investment.”

Shropshire councillor Rob Gittins, who represents the area and is an active campaigner for improvements on the A529, said: “The Government and Shropshire Council have been investing a large capital resource to improve the safety along the A529.

"The defibrillator and a stretch of footpath on the junction with Sutton Road soon to be funded through the Community Infrastructure Levy are two key pieces of safety investment the parish council have consistently raised.

"These things take time to put in place and the parish council has had the stamina to follow through. Well done.”

The approach to the project has involved a partnership with the local pub at Woodseaves, which is supplying the electricity and checking everything is running as it should be each month.

Shane Holland, from the Four Alls, who previously worked for the ambulance service, said: "It’s a pleasure for the Four Alls to be able to support the parish council with its provision of a potential life-saving piece of equipment for the local community and the surrounding area.

"As we have seen over the past year or so it is essential for us all to support our own local community and people within it when we can, so we were really pleased when the parish council asked us to be a partner in their project.

"We look forward to working with the parish council on other local community projects they have planned.

"Should you be faced with the need for it, the automated external defibrillator is fully visible on the building from the road side.

"Accessed either with a code from the emergency services or the site, it leads you through everything you need to do, with no training needed.”

There have been a number of fatal collisions on the road in recent years.

In 2016, a 23-year old man died when the car he was a passenger in left the road and went down an embankment.

An 80-year-old woman died following a two-vehicle crash at the Sweet Appletree crossroads near Hinstock in 2015.

In December 2017, a man in his 60s suffered a head injury after his car collided with a wall on the A529 near Woodseaves.

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