A director of the UK’s largest independent road safety charity believes an "immediate safety review" of a width restriction in Watford is required.

Neil Greig, from IAM RoadSmart, says the restriction in Woodmere Avenue is "not fit for purpose" after analysing a video of drivers crashing into the posts.

The Observer has put together a compilation of eight crashes that have occurred at the same set of posts between August and October of this year.

All of the incidents were captured on a doorbell camera - and there are more crashes that have happened both during and before this time period which don't appear in the clip.

Watford Observer: All of the crashes in the video happen at this particular width restriction in Woodmere Avenue rather than on the other side.All of the crashes in the video happen at this particular width restriction in Woodmere Avenue rather than on the other side.

It comes after a spokesperson for Hertfordshire County Council, which is responsible for the width restriction, told the Observer on September 17 the width restriction "does not meet the criteria for inclusion in our safety engineering programme".

All eight clips that appear in the video show drivers travelling from the A41 in the direction of Bushey Mill Lane.

Different types of vehicles are involved, ranging from tiny hatchbacks to vans - including a police van, with drivers travelling at various speeds from slow and cautious to far too fast.

The video shows that seven of the eight crashes occur after the vehicle appears to strike the first left post sending it momentarily into the air.

Watch the video below

Tracy Vigor, whose home is directly outside the width restriction, has previously told the Observer it is not necessarily the number of posts (six) that make up the width restriction in Woodmere Avenue that is causing the collisions - but the first left post because of its positioning in line with the kerb which is on a "curve".

Watford Observer: There have been accusations the shape of the lining of the kerb (shown on the right) leading up to the restriction is catching drivers out and causing them to smash into the first post on the leftThere have been accusations the shape of the lining of the kerb (shown on the right) leading up to the restriction is catching drivers out and causing them to smash into the first post on the left

The Observer reached out to IAM RoadSmart for its thoughts on the video. The charity was also sent various photographs of the width restriction and some background information.

Mr Greig, a policy and research director for IAM RoadSmart, responded: "This location is a mess with numerous warning signs enforcing different things.

"The lack of distinctive markings on the [first left] post and the slight curve of the pavement, along with the dropped kerb as you approach the width restrictions, allows you to position onto the pavement (without realising it) which is all making a confusing situation worse.

"Over the course of time, with continuous impact, the width restriction is likely to move slightly and lean either way. It’s clearly not fit for purpose, as the number of accidents recorded prove, and it should be reviewed immediately before someone is seriously injured."

Watford Observer: The first left post, pictured in September, has been completely battered by vehicles smashing into itThe first left post, pictured in September, has been completely battered by vehicles smashing into it

A Freedom of Information request revealed the council only had four reports of crashes at this width restriction since 2016 - because the data is provided by police and only includes crashes that involved injury.

Watford's MP Dean Russell, who has recently called for "urgent changes" at the width restriction - and even brought the issue up in Parliament in the spring - was also sent the video.

He responded: "It appears that the majority of the time incidents are happening because of the layout of the posts.

"I cannot see why Woodmere Avenue does not meet the criteria for inclusion in the safety engineering programme.

"Even with an abundance of signage, drivers knowing the exact width of their vehicle and travelling at a safe speed, accidents will still happen unless the posts are changed."

Watford Observer: This police van's tyre was destroyed after the officer driving it hit the first post in SeptemberThis police van's tyre was destroyed after the officer driving it hit the first post in September

A spokesperson for the council told the Observer on September 17 they were aware of residents' concerns about the width restriction but said "drivers do have to take responsibility for knowing the width of their vehicle and navigating the restriction at a safe speed".

On September 21, council officers visited Woodmere Avenue to discuss concerns with Tudor and Meriden county councillor Stephen Cavinder, along with residents, following a request by the councillor.

Cllr Cavinder said afterwards: "I believe there is now a recognition that something needs to be done and those officers who attended have gone away to reflect and consider what options are possible...I will keep pressing for a solution to this very concerning issue."

Watford Observer: Council officers in Woodmere Avenue on September 21 observing the width restrictionCouncil officers in Woodmere Avenue on September 21 observing the width restriction

Cllr Cavinder has said he does not believe the current width restriction works as a scheme overall because of the number of drivers who ignore no-entry signs and pass through the prohibited bus lane.

He has suggested the width restriction is taken away and cameras are installed which act as a deterrent to stop prohibited larger vehicles from using Woodmere Avenue like lorries.

Watford Observer: A wider shot of the width restriction with the bus lane shown through the middleA wider shot of the width restriction with the bus lane shown through the middle

The Vigor's would also like to see cameras installed instead and the posts taken away.

The Woodmere Avenue width restriction was first introduced in 1980 with the design changed around 10 years ago, to bring in two extra posts either side. There is no other restriction design like it in Watford.

It has been a long-running issue for many years, but only recently have crashes been caught on camera and shared into the public domain.

Watford Observer:

The majority of motorists pass through the bollards without incident but on occasions, drivers scrape their vehicles on one of more of the posts. The most serious crashes seem to occur however when drivers strike that first post and vehicles are sometimes left written off.

Mr Greig added: "A more focussed approach about what the system is trying to achieve is required.

"I would suggest getting the police involved but they are clearly aware, and may have already made contact with the local highways department about the design, following the incident one of their vehicles were involved in."