Leading county cabinet members have faced calls to resign after a council report revealed modelling which showed LTNs lead to ambulances experiencing delays when responding to “life threatening” calls.

The council report analysed the impact of LTNs in East Oxford and Cowley on South Central Ambulance Service’s response times and found the traffic measures could cause delays of between 35 to 45 seconds to response times for life threatening, emergency, and urgent calls in East Oxford.

County councillor and leader of the Conservative group at the county council, Eddie Reeves, has since called for Andrew Gant, cabinet member for highways management and Duncan Enright, cabinet member for travel, to resign for not releasing the information in an “open and transparent manner”.

Mr Reeves said: "Liberal Democrat and Labour Councillors have serious questions to answer.

"This vital information should have been released in an open and transparent manner, rather than being buried at the back of a long consultation document that most members of the public will never see.

“Leaving aside the tragic human cost, the financial cost alone to our NHS Trust is given as at £650,000 and would be as high as £10 million if LTNs were expanded across our NHS area and they resulted, on average, in a 40-second delay to CAT1 responses.”

Both Mr Gant and Mr Enright were approached for comment.

The council has stressed that the data is based on a re-routing of the vehicles rather than allowing emergency services to take the bollards down.

The report’s modelling used the ambulance service’s response data between May 1, 2022, and November 13, 2022 and this found that LTNs could cause 45 second delays to life threatening cases in East Oxford.

A 40 second delay is a significant delay given that the average response time target for life threatening calls is seven minutes.

In the Cowley area, the LTNs had less of an impact on response times, but the modelling showed that life-threatening calls were still delayed by three seconds and emergency calls by six seconds.

Sajjad Malik, independent city councillor, said the “cat was now out of the bag” and he accused the council of going ahead with traffic measures which left “emergency services struggling to cope with services due to LTNs”.

He said: “All along, the county council and Mr Gant have been playing with people’s lives and it’s about time they concede and remove the LTNs completely.”

The report concludes the impact of LTNs on the ambulance service’s response time for life threatening calls is sufficient to have a “cost implication” of £650,000.

The Optima Predict event simulation platform was used to come up with these findings and this platform assesses the impact on response time of introducing LTN filters against a baseline of the prevailing response time.

The county council is holding a six-week consultation to gather views on proposed changes to the LTNs in East Oxford.

The LTNs on Divinity Road, St Clement’s and St Mary’s were originally introduced on a trial basis and Mr Gant said he was pleased the council was giving residents “another opportunity to offer detailed feedback”.

An Oxfordshire County Council spokesman said: “The east Oxford low traffic neighbourhoods were introduced on an experimental basis in May 2022, and the trial is on-going.

“The council has been gathering and analysing the first year’s worth of feedback to understand the trial’s impact and to help inform future decision making.

“We have listened to this feedback and are proposing some changes which could be introduced if the council decides to continue with the LTNs.

“Automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) is being proposed as a result of ongoing engagement with the emergency services.

“A six-week consultation opened this week to gather views on the proposed changes and understand east Oxford LTNs’ impact since new bollards were introduced in March.

“Modelling emergency services response time delay using simulation forms part of the monitoring and evaluation of the east Oxford LTNs.

“The simulation is based on re-routing the vehicles rather than allowing emergency services to take the bollards down.

“A snapshot report, which includes simulation data on response times, became available in May.

“Full analysis is being undertaken over the summer and will be published to support the cabinet decision, expected in October, on whether the LTNs should become permanent.”