MPs Want "Smart" Motorway Upgrades Suspended

By Gary Cutlack on at

MPs are asking for a halt on the introduction of the modern British "smart" motorway, which often sees the hard shoulders of our traffic arteries turned into controlled additional lanes to keep traffic flowing. This is not particularly smart for anyone who suffers a breakdown and borders on the dangerous, they say.

The halt on smart motorways has long been called for by pressure group the Campaign for Safer Roadside Rescue and Recovery, and now a cross-party committee of MPs has agreed, with MP Tracy Crouch saying: "We need the government to pause and reflect on whether we're getting this right," adding that there needs to be a better understanding of how to best rescue people who become stranded when there's no extra tarmac available to grind to a halt on.

Highways England doesn't agree, though, as it thinks improved broken down vehicle detection systems and shorter gaps between emergency refuge areas -- mini hard shoulder lay-bys -- are a trade off worth making to keep the lifeblood of the country trucking apace. [BBC]