Cornwall road with high accident rate to get average speed camera

The road is known by locals as the 'Falmouth Gateway'. Credit: Google Maps

A stretch of road in Cornwall known for its high accident rate is to get a speed camera after years of demand.

The area, known locally as the ‘Falmouth Gateway’, includes part of the A39 at Perranarworthal.

Stuart Douglas, coordinator of a nearby Community Speedwatch group and former police detective, said the area has seen a lot of accidents.

There were two fatal crashes in 2017 and there have been several other non-fatal collisions this year.

More recently, the Falmouth Gateway was the scene of a fatal crash in 2019 - and this year there was another crash at the same spot, between a car and motorbike. These, Mr Douglas said, have almost all come from speeding in what is a 30mph zone.

As a result, he has been running a neighbourhood speed watch for the past five years.

This involves volunteers - including Mr Douglas and Cornwall Councillor Peter Williams - gathering data on average speeds.

And at the start of the pandemic, Perranarworthal Parish Council bought a speed activation sign - which Mr Douglas said proved the need for a permanent speed camera.

“We put the mobile speed activation sign at the bottom of Cove Hill, which is where the last fatal accident was in May 2019," he said.

"It certainly makes a difference when the unit is working and displaying the speed. The problem is when it’s not displaying.”

According to Mr Douglas, the worst of the speeding is traffic heading from Falmouth to Truro - where the average car was far exceeding 30mph.

“If you look at the stats,” Mr Douglas added, “the gateway has had a very high accident rate. The road has been altered over the last five years.

“Hopefully, if we get our objective there to get an average speed camera there for the 30mph limit that should reduce the average speed to below.”

Truro and Falmouth MP Cherilyn Mackrory and Police and Crime Commissioner Alison Hernandez have since joined Mr Douglas on his speed watch.

A social media post, on behalf of Ms Hernandez, said: “Fantastic news that the A39 ‘Falmouth gateway’ Foundry area is to receive an average speed camera.

“Community speed watch volunteers here led by Stuart Douglas have worked hard with partners Perranarworthal Parish Council, Devon and Cornwall Roads Policing, Cornwall Council and CORMAC to make this happen over the last three years.

“The last fatal incident here was in 2019.”

The camera is due to be installed once it has been given the financial go-ahead from Cornwall Council.