Posted: 15.07.21 at 01:53 by The Editor
THE lack of transparency and a dearth of information about possible health risks from the planned Lower Thames Crossing is concerning a Chadwell St Mary councillor who feels that young people in the borough will be put at risk if the billion pound project gets the green light.
Cllr Sara Muldowney was scathing in her criticism and undaunted in her questioning of leading figures from project masterminds Highways England when the route of the planned crossing was discussed at Monday’s meeting of Thurrock Council’s Lower Thames Crossing Task Force.
You can see her ask questions and expound on her fears via this video link. The health impact is discussed around one hour and 43 minutes into the meeting, with Cllr Muldowney outlining her concerns.
After the meeting Cllr Muldowney said: “It was very disappointing to once again have no further information about the health impacts of the Lower Thames Crossing from Highways England at the Task Force meeting last night."
"I know that in my ward we already have the highest rates of health conditions, like COPD, outside of London and I want to know what the impact is going to be for these residents and how Highways England is going to mitigate the pollution effects of a six lane motorway being built practically next to their houses. Residents want to know: "Is this going to potentially shorten my life by 5/10/20 years? Do I need to move away?"
"Then there are our young people. The construction zone will be 200m away from Orsett Heath Academy, the new school being built in Grays. There is already a temporary site with the first cohort of children there.
“What's it going to be like for them attending school so close to a major construction site for six years or however long it actually takes to build the road, not to mention the disruption getting to and from school from long closures of the A1013.
"The response from Highways England that they are doing more than they have to, by completing a Health Impact Assessment, just says it all really. At the end of the day, it's not their children, it's not their relatives with underlying health conditions, it's not their parents and grandparents who will be affected. It's just not personal for them. It's very personal for us living in Thurrock."
"The new consultation has started and runs to the 8 September, and I urge everyone to take part. This is our last chance to make our voices heard in Thurrock!"
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