MP for Barnsley East, Stephanie Peacock, has welcomed Transport Secretary Grant Shapps’ decision to pause the rollout of smart motorways.

Smart motorways aim to reduce congestion on busy roads, in part by utilising the hard shoulder as a further lane for traffic.

Since their introduction, a number of bereaved loved ones have been campaigning to highlight the safety risks of such measures. By removing the hard shoulder, broken down vehicles have the potential to become stranded on busy roads, resulting in potentially fatal collisions.

The Labour Party has also long been warning of the flaws of smart motorways, appealing for Government to collect and review the evidence before further lives are lost.

Though Ms Peacock welcomed announcements that the rollout will be halted, the MP criticised the Government for not putting the brakes on the scheme sooner.

Stephanie Peacock commented:

‘In their current form, smart motorways are simply not safe.

‘The Government’s decision to place a pause on their rollout is welcome but comes too late with 38 lives tragically lost since 2014.

‘All available evidence must be reviewed before further decisions are made, and safety must absolutely be the number one priority moving forwards.’


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