Wednesday 19 June 2013

Major Fire causes Town Centre Chaos

Gridlock on the minor side street that is Springfield Road, as all bus routes are diverted due to a major fire
On Wednesday 19th June a major fire broke out at the Walkabout Bar on Queen Street in Blackpool. The fire started at around 5.30 in the morning, and the surrounding streets were all closed off due to numerous fire appliances and ancillary vehicles attending the incident, with fire hoses being run along the streets to several different water hydrants. The resultant road closures played havoc with all the local bus services, this being on top of the existing road closures due to the Talbot Gateway work, and a collapsed sewer at the Dickson Road end of Queen Street. As the morning progressed the situation eased slightly, with the northbound Promenade being opened alongside the Metropole Hotel, and also the section of Abingdon Street alongside the Library being cleared, allowing northbound buses to use this short cut. The upper end of Talbot Road (between Abingdon Street and Topping Street) was completely closed all morning due to fire hoses running down the street, necessitating the traffic flow on the normally one-way northbound Topping Street to be reversed, and the pedestrianised St John's Square in front of the Winter Gardens was opened up to all traffic for the duration of the road closures. Southbound Promenade buses had to turn left onto Springfield Road (at the rear of the Metropole), joining with other bus routes that been diverted along the north end of Abingdon Street, this caused gridlock on Springfield Road, not helped by the temporary traffic lights at its junction with Dickson Road, associated with the major road works in the area.

Optare Solo 287 turns off the Promenade onto Springfield Road due to road closures caused by the major fire

Buses passing a disused bus shelter in the normally pedestrianised St John's Square, due to major road closures

Traffic entering the normally pedestrian only St John's Square in front of the Winter Gardens, due to road closures

Upper Talbot Rd and Abingdon St north were both closed due to the fire, so all routes headed west down Talbot Rd

Bus routes could only use Talbot Road westbound, hence Solo 294 bound for Marton Mere heading the wrong way

Stagecoach Trident 18364 being diverted south along Topping St due to Talbot Road being closed because of a fire

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