Drivers warned to watch out, the cows are about
Drivers are being advised to take care as hundreds of cattle are roaming the Minchinhampton, Selsley and Rodborough commons.
This year there have been eleven collisions between cattle and motor vehicles of which five cows have died. Each of these collisions involved not only the death of a cow, but the driver and passengers were put at serious risk of injury.
The county council is therefore urging drivers to drop their speed across the commons while the cows are free roaming, as the cattle can be unpredictable and are often difficult to see during the night.
If a driver accidentally hits a cow they should stop and call the police on 101 or in the case of a cow death call 999. The police will then contact the hayward Mark Dawkins.
Several measures have been put into place to try and reduce the number of cows being hit. Signs have been put up to remind road users to be alert when driving, and several of the signs will also be reflective to make sure they can be seen at night.
Working in partnership with the county council, Minchinhampton Parish Council have recently invested in a new Speed Indicator Device (SID) which has been deployed to several agreed locations across the common to advise drivers to ‘slow down’ when approaching the sign above the speed limit.
Furthermore, the county council have refreshed road markings and replaced broken road studs to improve road safety across the commons.
Cllr David Norman, cabinet member for community safety, said: “The grazing of cattle is an important element in preserving the unique wildlife on the commons, and we don’t want to lose that which makes the area so special. When a vehicle collides with a cow, it's not always the cow that comes off worst, so it must be a case of speeds down and observation up.”
Cllr Rachel Smith county councillor for Minchinhampton, said: “The cows will be out for quite a few more weeks yet, so it's important as the evenings get darker road users slow down and are extra observant while driving on the commons. The continued presence of the cows on the common are crucial not only to continue the unique farming heritage of the area, but also for the conservation of the local biodiversity. There have been a number of hit and run incidents involving cows over the summer, and I'd urge anyone involved in a collision with a cow to stop and call the police.”