'Anything could happen’: Call for changes to Hacton Lane junction

The view from the junction looking up Hacton Lane, with The Optimist Tavern on the right-hand-side

The view from the junction looking up Hacton Lane, with The Optimist Tavern on the right-hand-side - Credit: Google

Drivers have spoken out about a “dangerous” Hacton Lane junction which one local described as like "Russian roulette". 

A 73-year-old man died after a two-car crash in a different place on Hacton Lane at about 10.30am on March 13, refocusing attention on the junction just down the road.  

Located opposite The Optimist Tavern, the junction has been the subject of ongoing concern from residents due to poor visibility and the speed with which cars approach. 

Cllr Osman Dervish, Havering's cabinet lead for environment, said the local authority is monitoring the road and working with police to review the site and look for any immediate works that need to take place.

Danny Haywood, 48, from Hornchurch, described pulling out onto Hacton Lane from the junction as “completely Russian roulette”. 

“The turning is very dangerous, it always has been," he said. “Cars are coming downhill and around a blind corner before reaching the junction that you are trying to pull out of. Anything could happen."  

The view from the junction looking down Hacton Lane

The view from the junction looking down Hacton Lane, away from The Optimist Tavern - Credit: Google

Danny said once drivers pull up in the lane parallel to the pub, they are forced to look through the passenger’s back window to see any traffic coming down and around the corner. 

"Or, if you are in a van, you can possibly only see 10 - 15 ft back up the road, which is not enough to see cars which are coming downhill.” 

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Karen Stanton, a 50-year-old teacher, said the “very tight angle” and cars coming down Hacton Lane “really fast” make it a dangerous junction. 

Karen Stanton

Karen Stanton - Credit: Karen Stanton

She added: “You’ve also got the blind corner coming round from the left-hand side.” 

Both Karen and Danny suggested traffic calming measures should be installed to improve safety. 

Cllr Dervish said the council undertakes programmes of work “each year to improve road safety, targeting priority areas and vulnerable road users”. 

He added a funding bid has been submitted to Transport for London (TfL) to enable the council to “assess the area in detail" and deliver a Hacton Lane Accident Reduction scheme in 2022/23: "This is subject to TfL funding and we are not clear when the funding announcement will be made by them. 

“In the meantime, we will continue to monitor road safety and collision statistics as part of our normal processes, will work with the police to review the site and look for any immediate works that may be required.” 

Update: A previous version of this article did not make clear that the accident occurred further up Hacton Lane, and not at the junction. It has now been amended to avoid further confusion.