EMERGENCY services raised concerns about a proposed low traffic scheme in East Oxford, a report reveals.

Earlier this week, results of public consultation regarding Oxfordshire County Council's plans to install a new Low Traffic Neighbourhood in East Oxford were published.

According to the council's consultation with emergency services across the city, 'principles and objectives of the LTNs were widely understood and supported'.

Read here: East Oxford says NO to new Low Traffic Neighbourhood plans for city streets

The emergency services, did, however, raise several concerns about how the scheme would affect response time.

The main concerns were:

Lockable bollards:

Emergency services said the proposed lockable bollards would take too long to unlock and require more resources than a service has during an emergency. 

Consequently it was said the lockable bollards would add too much time to response time.

The council looked to find workable solution's with the emergency services to help solve this issue.

Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service said lockable bollards may be an option in some cases for them, but it would have to have the equipment to move filters, if necessary, in an emergency.

Police and ambulance service said they would find it quicker to use a routing software to work around the LTNs rather than using a through road, however, said exceptions would need to be made on key routes.

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These included Magdalen Road, Howard Street, and Princes Street.

The council said it recommends a combination of planters and lockable bollards should be used if the LTN is approved, and will consider other options to address the concerns raised further.

It said this would also enable closures to be opened in an emergency if main routes are closed.

Earlier this year, some residents claimed that a man's death could have been prevented if the ambulance was not slowed down by the LTNs in Cowley.

South Central Ambulance Service said the LTN did not stop paramedics from reaching a dying man quicker.

The six-month trial LTN is currently taking part in Temple Cowley, Church Cowley and Florence Park.

Narrow Roads:

Emergency services said the narrow roads in the proposed area make it difficult for large vehicles, such as fire engines, to turn around, and reversing up the roads instead would be dangerous for vehicles and other road users.

Responding to this concern, the council has said 'design changes have been proposed to ensure the locations of the traffic filter are at the best possible section of the road for turning, and that extra space has been allowed where possible to facilitate this'.

Increase traffic:

Emergency services said increased traffic on arterial roads (these are Iffley Road, Cowley Road and St Clements) would add to emergency response times.

Anti-social behaviour:

Thames Valley Police also raised specific concerns that extra enforcement may be required to police these schemes due to anti-social behaviour on quieter streets.

TVP also said it was concerned that flexible bollards would be abused by members of the public and further investigation is needed.

Earlier this year, an LTN planter was set on fire on Rymers Lane near Florence Park, where a separate LTN trial is currently underway.

Next week the council will make a final decision on whether the trial scheme will go ahead and if any changes need to be made to the proposed plan.

Data from the public consultation revealled that while there is great support from residents living in the proposed East Oxford LTN area, those living elsewhre in the city do not support it.