An urgent review of the Keady Road at Ballyards will be carried out by Regional Development Minister Danny Kennedy over the coming weeks following representations from councillor Thomas O’Hanlon.
This weekend another young man has been involved in an accident at this point.
LISTEN: Cllr. Thomas O’Hanlon speaks on the Keady-Armagh Road issue
Councillor O’Hanlon explained: “The Keady Road at Ballyards is a notorious accident black spot and in recent weeks we have seen a spike in the number of accidents happening, with three accidents occurring in one week alone with a number of people being hospitalised like we seen again this weekend.
“The time for passing the buck really must end, time and time again over recent years I have made representations to the local and divisional offices to have improvements carried out, and whilst there has always been an acknowledgement that there is a problem, to date nothing has been done to improve this section of road.
“In response to the huge outcry locally following the latest spate of accidents I started an online petition and secured over 1,000 signatures within days of being launched.
“I have requested a meeting on site with Minister Danny Kennedy and his most senior officials to try and make progress once and for all. In response to my letter the Minister has initiated an urgent review of the road and has tasked officials to bring back proposals which would improve road and driver safety at this location. When the proposals have been worked up we will meet on site to discuss the most appropriate way forward.
“This is a significant step forward and I welcome the Ministers intervention. I know this is a difficult stretch of road to work with but I believe with a bit of imagination significant improvements can be made that would make the road much safer for all concerned.
“I have forwarded the petition to the Minister and to the Divisional Office in Marlborough House to demonstrate the strong public support for improvements at Ballyards. Whilst Roads Service can make all the improvements in the world, we all need to be aware of the dangers on the road and drive carefully.
“The Minister expects the review to take about four weeks to complete and I hope that we will see a proposal on the table early in the new year with improvements being implemented as soon as possible thereafter, hopefully in early spring.”