Page last updated at 15:43 GMT, Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Roadside tributes to be removed

Roadside tributes to crash victims will be removed after 12 weeks under proposals approved by a council.

Derbyshire County Council said it was concerned they were a distraction to drivers and voted through the plans on Tuesday night.

New guidelines also mean police family liaison officers will accompany bereaved people wishing to lay tributes to ensure they are laid safely.

The plans were approved following consultation with local people.

The council said existing memorials would be dealt with on an individual basis following consultation with the families involved.

'Mark of respect'

Councillor Clive Moesby, Derbyshire County Council's cabinet member for community safety, said: "We sympathise with the wishes of relatives and friends of people to lay flowers or place other tributes as a mark of respect.

"But we have a responsibility to maintain the safest possible conditions on Derbyshire's roads.

"People who stop at the site of a crash to place flowers or maintain tributes could be putting themselves at risk and flowers and tributes can provide a visual distraction to road users.

"We appreciate this is a very sensitive issue for people who have lost loved ones and so we felt clear guidance was needed."

Safety priority

A spokeswoman for Derbyshire Police said the council had consulted with the force over the plans.

"Family liaison officers are appointed to work with families in these circumstances and they will incorporate this in their normal role.

"The priority will be to ensure people lay tributes safely," the spokeswoman added.

Tributes removed by the council will be kept in a secure place until they are collected by the families concerned.

The council said it would review the policy in 2011.

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SEE ALSO
Father defiant over road memorial
06 Mar 09 |  Derbyshire
Time limit for roadside memorials
28 Sep 06 |  Southern Counties
Plans to stop roadside memorials
28 May 04 |  North Yorkshire

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