FAMILIES are demanding action over an “accident blackspot” junction in Benfleet.

Residents of Jotmans Lane and High Road have had enough of motorists crashing into safety barriers at the junction, nicknamed “Cemetery Corner”.

Last weekend, a vehicle crashed into the barriers derailing three of them, resulting in part of a wall collapsing.

Sharon Ainsley, who lives near Jotmans Lane, said the crash could have killed someone if they were walking by at the time.

She said: “The railings have been up and down so many times.

“This time, the car has breached the railings, next to the bench and smashed into and damaged the wall. If there were any pedestrians on the path or seated at the bench, they would have been seriously injured.

“And yet, Essex Highways say this is a safe junction, which is capable of handling a much larger volume of traffic? Fact is it simply can’t cope with anymore, this junction has had so many bumps and crashes over the years, someone will be killed if something isn’t done.”

Ms Ainsley, who formed the Jotmans Lane Action Group several years ago, has been campaigned for improvements to the road. Members are worried about potential future development in Benfleet which could see a huge increase in traffic.

Castle Point Council’s draft local plan, which was voted down by councillors in December, would see development of 940 homes on land west of the town.

Government intervention is set to take place over the plan.

Ms Ainsley added: “This junction can’t take traffic from 900 more homes in the area, it’s a complete death trap now.”

Another Jotmans Lane resident, who asked not to be named, said: “If these homes happens hundreds of trucks, diggers, HGVs etc will go round Cemetery Corner on a daily basis - they will also return the same way because there is no western route out. It will be an utter catastrophe.”

A highways spokesman said: “Collisions anywhere on our roads are to be regretted, and we would remind drivers to keep to the speed limit at all times and pay attention to the road and other traffic. We do not know the cause of this incident and if there were injuries and it was reported to Essex Police then they will investigate the cause.

“We have clear criteria, one set applied in urban areas, one in rural areas, for when a section of road requires safety improvements due to a cluster of serious collisions.

“However, issues that don’t meet the criteria may still be improved by your Local Highway Panel. Please contact your local Essex County Councillor to get their support to raise the matter at the Panel.”