Watch out, the cows are about

 

Cows are set to make their annual return around the Minchinhampton, Selsley and Rodborough commons this month and drivers are being warned to take care.

Last year, seven cattle died in collisions with motor vehicles, compared to the eight the previous year. However, each of these collisions involved not only the death of a cow, but the driver and passengers involved in the collisions were put at serious risk of injury.

The 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.

Around 500 local cattle are expected to appear on the commons from Monday 13th May, known as marking day. Several measures are being put in place to try and reduce the number of cows being hit.

Signs will be out to remind users to be alert when driving, and several of the signs will also be reflective to make sure they can be seen at night.

Fencing has been erected in an attempt to stop cows walking onto the road by the quarry next to the Amberley turn, where the majority of collisions occur.

A variable message sign trailer will also be used to highlight the release of cattle and incidents as they occur and new yellow cattle warning signs are at the main entrances to the common.

Martyn Midgley, area highways manager, said: “It may not sound dangerous, but colliding with a cow when driving can be very serious.

“You may drive across this road regularly, but when the cows are released onto the common, you need to be extra observant.”