A resident has warned that someone will be killed if improved traffic measures aren’t installed on a busy road in Weymouth.

Pete Barrow has launched a petition urging Dorset County Council to install a temporary pedestrian crossing on the A354 Weymouth Way next to Chafeys Roundabout at Southill.

It comes after the pedestrian crossing was closed last month while a gas leak was investigated.

Mr Barrow, 58, from Southill, says this means residents hoping to cross the road on their way into town are forced to ‘make a dash for it’ and put their lives at risk.

He said: “If nothing is done then someone is going to get hurt. The pedestrian crossing on the Weymouth Way at Southill was installed for a very good reason – the road is too dangerous to cross without it.

“Prior to the crossing being installed you quite literally took your life in your hands as you made a quick dash across the roundabout approach roads.

“Those with mobility issues or young children were faced with an even greater risk.”

He has become frustrated with the lack of information about when the pedestrian crossing will be re-opened.

He said: “We have since been told it’s a complicated leak and may take some time to repair, but we don’t know if that’s to be measured in weeks, months or even years. So we are back to making a dash for it across the roundabout as before, a situation that was considered too dangerous and the reason the crossing was installed.”

The petition can be found on the website 38 degrees.

Dorset County Council, which is working with gas distribution company SGN, has responded to Mr Barrow’s concerns.

A DCC spokesman said: “We would like to assure the public that pedestrian safety is a top priority at this site, and central to all interim and long-term solutions.”

SGN and highways officials met at the site this week to consider further options for improving pedestrian safety. These included extending the 30mph speed limit to all approaches to the roundabout, temporarily reducing the carriageways to one lane entering the roundabout from the north coming down the A354 Weymouth Way and eastbound from the B3157 Granby Way, and temporarily reducing the width of the carriageway exiting the roundabout toward Dorchester to slow traffic.

SGN is working on two proposals to rectify the leak – building a new main bypassing the gas leak, or to repair it. The leak is in a Site of Special Scientific Interest and an RSPB reserve – as such, special licences must be sought before works can get underway. SGN says It has secured funding for option 1 – to build a new main to bypass the leak. This will make the 4-metre deep pipe in Radipole reserve redundant and provide future resilience for the gas main and highway. The project is being handed over to SGN’s mains relay department for them to design and progress the scheme. There is currently no start date agreed, but SGN is treating it as a priority. Once work starts It may take six to eight weeks to complete.