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Sign snatchers put lives in danger
9:31am Friday 23rd August 2013 in News
THEY have put lives at risk by plundering vital road signs from rural roads.
Level crossings and dangerous bends were among some of the approaching hazards alerting motorists on eight signs which have now vanished from near Romsey.
Now police and parish councillors have made an urgent appeal to trace the thieves they say are behind the thefts before an accident happens.
It is believed scrap metal thieves have stolen at least six of the aluminium signs, which have a combined value of £1,000.
Police have warned scrap dealers in the area to keep a lookout for anyone trying to sell them the items, which went missing between Saturday, August 10 and Friday of last week (August 16).
They include the “stop when lights show” warning on the B3084 approaching the Mottisfont and Dunbridge railway station in Hat Hill and the bend warning sign in Danes Road, Awbridge.
One of five green Mottisfont village signs specially designed for the Millennium, featuring a gold-coloured National Trust logo and costing £200, disappeared from Oakley Road.
A police spokesman said: “Some of these signs were taken from dangerous locations, such as railway crossings and bends and it could have serious consequences for motorists.
“They are aluminium signs that could have some scrap value, although it is not necessarily that.
“We are speaking to scrap metal merchants to let us know if anyone approaches them with them.”
Mottisfont Parish Council highways representative, Andy Simmonds, said: “Local authorities are already struggling with cuts to their budgets and don’t need this.
“Road signs are not cheap and the cost of replacing them could well add to the local authority insurance premiums and hit council taxpayers’ pockets.
“There are also safety issues when road signs are stolen.”
The remaining missing roads signs are:
- Direction sign at the B3084 and Benger’s Lane in Mottisfont.
- Direction sign at the B3084, Saunders Lane and Barley Hill junction in Dunbridge with directions to Broughton, Mottisfont and Dunbridge.
- Direction sign atA3057 and Kimbridge Lane junction at the Bear and Ragged Staff at Michelmersh signposting the Kimbridge Farm Shop.
- Timsbury nameplate on A3057 south of the Bear and Ragged Staff.
- Awbridge nameplate in Danes Road in Awbridge.
Witnesses or anyone who knows the whereabouts of the signs should contact Romsey Police Station on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
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