Smart Motorway safety tools to be installed in weeks causing 'some disruption'

Smart motorway Stopped Vehicle Detection (SVD) cameras will be installed on the M20 in Kent as part of the government’s bid to improve safety on the roads. However, it has taken almost a year for the important safety tool to be installed on the road which was completed in April.

“But they have explained some of the mitigating actions they will be taking and I will hold them to account on this.”

Ms Crouch added she continued to receive emails from residents who find the new smart motorway “incredibly daunting”.

The government’s Smart Motorway stocktake published earlier this year reveals the need to “substantially speed up” the deployment of SVD systems.

The report said this was important to ensure stopped vehicles could be detected so lanes could be “closed more quickly”.

Roads which were completed in 2020 are the first to receive the new technology as standard.

The tools were already trialled on two sections of smart motorway on the M25 before a wider rollout was considered.

However, Highways England warns confusion surrounding the Brexit transition period could scupper plans to roll out the new tools in Kent at all.

They said their priority was to keep Kent moving and reduce disruption over the first weeks in January.

A Highways England spokesperson said: “Although the work to install stopped vehicle detection on the M20 in Kent is scheduled to start on Monday, January 4 we stand ready to change our plans, depending on the changing situation in Kent.

“The work is planned to take place overnight only and to be completed by the end of March 2021.”