Highways engineers are investigating an ongoing water leak that caused two accidents in two days when it froze over.
The accidents happened in Conduit Road, the first early on Friday last week and the second on Saturday morning. On both occasions, vehicles skidded on the ice and crashed into walls.
According to residents, water has been steadily streaming from an underground source about half way up the road for several years. But so far nothing has been done.
Anglian Water engineers inspected the leak earlier this week, testing it for chlorine. They found no trace of the chemical, confirming that the water source was natural.
Lincolnshrie County Council, as the highways authority, then sent engineers to investigate. On Wednesday, area highways manager Kevin Brumfield said: “Highways are aware of water leaking onto Conduit Road in Stamford, and we are currently investigating the source of the leak to assess what action can be taken.
“The road will be closed until further notice to ensure the safety of road users.”
The discovery of an underground water source in Conduit Road is not necessarily a surprise, given the name of the street. But the fact that it has not been dealt with for some time is a source of great concern for residents, particularly during the winter when the water often freezes.
Geoff Woodcock said the water had been leaking for about three years.
“It’s causing real problems,” he added. “Last year we had gritters come down especially to try to help, but we still had accidents.
“It’s not going to be long before someone is seriously hurt. Because the water table is high at the moment the water is coming out and there’s a natural skating rink.
“We are living in an accident blackspot.”
Rob Foulkes (Ukip) is the Lincolnshire county councillor for the Stamford North ward, which covers Conduit Road. He has been pushing for a resolution to the problem since he was elected in December 2014.
Coun Foulkes said: “We’re facing cold weather in February and March and the leak must be fixed before it freezes over again, causing more accidents. We’re very fortunate no-one’s been hurt, or worse.
“Gritting is largely ineffective as the water washes the salt away. Until the council fixes the leak, I advise drivers to exercise extreme caution, especially if it’s icy. Unfortunately highways are short staffed, but I’ve been assured that the situation is receiving top priority.”