Thursday, March 01, 2012

Confusion after council workmen paint double yellow lines across middle of road

Motorists have called them “baffling” and they have left the experts stumped. Not even the Highway Code seems to cast light on what these double yellow lines might mean. The road markings have sprung up across some of the junctions in Headington, Oxford. Oxfordshire County Council has painted the lines as part of its scheme to upgrade the area. But nobody seems to know what they mean.

Stephen Road resident Dominic Francis said: “They are really baffling. What I would take from it is you cannot park in the middle of the road. But I cannot understand what the council is doing. It must be some sort of mistake.” According to the Highway Code, published by the Department for Transport, double-yellow lines along the edge of the carriageway indicate no waiting at any time.

It makes no mention of double yellow lines across the carriageway. The lines are before a flattened speed bump which pedestrians can use to cross the road. But Bickerton Road resident Mike Ratcliffe said: “There have been no problems with people parking there. It seems to be a bizarre error.” Even Martin Bourne, an expert in road traffic law with law firm Darby’s, could not understand what the lines were for.

He said: “If you were to park there you would be committing an offence anyway because you would be obstructing the highway. That’s a much more serious offence, so the lines are redundant.” Local city councillor Ruth Wilkinson said: “It makes you wonder what they will think of next.” County council spokesman Owen Morton said: “The aim is to make the junction look more residential and deter drivers who are less familiar with the area from using side roads as a rat run.”

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