Tanhouse residents living on Ennerdale and nearby estates are being forced to dodge the traffic to get across the road as the underpass disappeared under 3 feet of water.
West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper met with Tanhouse residents Vera Arnold and Marie Smith on the steps of an underpass to cross Tanhouse Road from the Ennerdale estate on Friday 14 September. The residents complained to Rosie that once again the underpass had flooded. This forced everyone including children and the elderly to dodge the traffic on Tanhouse Road, which has dual lanes in both directions and a barrier in the middle.
On receiving the complaints MP Rosie immediately contacted Lancashire County Council to seek action to clear the underpass so that residents could cross between estates without having to take their life in their own hands.
MP Rosie said:
“Whilst I was at the underpass and number of people came to the entrances only to realise that without waders they were not getting through. It is simply a disgrace that people are being prevented from using the underpasses. Given the water levels, it is clear that the drains were blocked and cannot be being maintained properly. I know this is not the first time flooding of underpasses has happened. This situation cannot go on.
“As we know the design of Skelmersdale new town always intended pedestrians to use the underpasses instead of having a traditional pavement system but underpasses are not much use if they are flooded and people cannot use them. These underpasses are a public highway and should be kept clear at all times.
“This incident highlights a number of problems with the underpass system. Not only are they not being properly maintained but there is a lack of safe alternative routes for pedestrians to use if the underpasses are blocked off.
“In other areas of the town people have also written to me complaining about underpasses encouraging all kinds of anti-social behaviour. It begs the question of whether the underpasses should be closed and a safer crossings should be provided at street level.
“I have written to Lancashire County Council to seek immediate action to stop this flooding from being repeated. In the longer-term I believe we need to find a better solution than the underpasses of the 1960s.”