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Crash every three days on M56 between Chester and Runcorn

FOI data reveals 114 collisions in 365 days on notorious route with up to three crashes on a couple of days

M56 delays

Crashes on an infamous section of M56 motorway between Runcorn and Chester happened on average about once every three days in the last year.

Data obtained from Highways England under the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA) revealed there were 114 collisions in 12 months between September 1, 2015, and August 30, 2016, on the M56 between junction 12 at Clifton and 15 Chester.

The list of every crash on the route ran to three pages.

According to the data, the notorious route experienced more than one collision on some days, including as many as three smashes each on October 20 and March 31.

Just under a fifth of collisions resulted in injury.

Equal numbers of crashes happened on the eastbound and westbound carriageways between J14 Hapsford and J12 Runcorn, with 47 – 41% of the total – in each direction.

Collisions were about six times more frequent on the westbound lanes between junctions 14 Hapsford and 15 Chester than on the eastbound, with 17 crashes heading west towards the city compared to just three heading away.

The data also revealed that motorcycles were involved in 20 collisions, about 17.5% of all crashes despite latest Department For Transport estimates indicating motorbikes account for just 0.9% of vehicles on UK roads.

None of the incidents involving motorcycles, however, resulted in injury.

Almost three quarters (71.4%) of collisions resulting in injury involved a car or cars only. Three crashes with injuries involved a car and a large goods vehicle – 14.3%.

One crash involved a car and minibus or motorhome, one was between a car and trailer or caravan and one involved a van.

With 114 collisions in 365 days, the probability of a crash in any one day was 31.2%. Highways England said work is under way to boost safety on the route.

A Highways England spokesman said: “Safety is our top priority and we are always looking at what new measures can be taken to improve safety on our network.

“We are currently developing plans to create a new junction between junctions 11 and 12 on the M56, to help improve the flow of traffic on the motorway.

“We held a public information event earlier this month and will be launching a formal consultation in the winter so drivers, business owners and local residents can have their say.”

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