LATE night ‘vandalism’ of traffic lights at Headington roadworks are giving council bosses a headache.

David Nimmo Smith, cabinet member for transport at Oxfordshire County Council, said the meddling with equipment ‘could lead to accidents’.

It follows reports from workers that traffic lights, barriers and signs have been moved, turned around or tipped over at the junction of Old Road with Roosevelt Drive, Gipsy Lane and Warneford Lane.

Mr Nimmo Smith said it had forced officials to look at whether CCTV or extra security should be put in place.

He said: “The traffic lights, barriers and signs are there for a very good reason – to keep people safe.

“Turning the lights round is worse than them not being on at all as it potentially gives drivers the wrong information and could lead to accidents.

“The vandalism seems to be happening late at night or possibly very early in the morning, but it only takes one car for there to be an accident.”

The county council has appealed to the public for help in solving the ‘mystery’.

It said anyone who had seen the vandalism taking place or who knew something about it should contact Thames Valley Police.

Mr Nimmo Smith added: “It needs to stop now.

“We are calling on anyone who has seen or know anything to let the police know.

“In the meantime we will investigate CCTV or extra security, but neither should be needed.”

Headington and Quarry county councillor Roz Smith said: “It just seems very senseless to me and I do not understand what these vandals are getting out of it.

“This is really a very busy junction and the worry is about safety because you’ve got lots of people coming in and out from the university and hospitals.

“Why these people are doing this and why they think it is an acceptable thing to do is for them to justify.”

The roadworks are part of the £12.5m Access to Headington scheme, which started in October.

The first phase has seen four-way temporary traffic lights put in place at the junction of Old Road, Roosevelt Drive, Gipsy Lane and Warneford.

It is hoped the 23-month project will tackle congestion in Headington by widening roads, adding cycle lanes and bus priority gates.

Those with information about the vandalism should call the non-emergency number 101.