A taxi driver has turned road safety campaigner after the council created what he calls a “tourist death trap”.

Raymond Horan says that he was absolutely horrified when the street lights close to his Sewardstone Road home went out at midnight on Sunday.

For ten months of the year Mr Horan and his family watch people of all ages, including some pushing buggies, trek up the A12 to the Lea Valley Campsite, where there is no pavement.

Now that there are no lights, he says it is only a matter of time before there is a fatality.

He said: “It is not a case of if but when.

“People get off the bus at the bottom after they have been out in London and walk up the hill. This is ridiculous.

“It is a hairpin bend. People often ask us how to get to the campsite and we have to direct them up the road that doesn’t even have a path. “

Essex County Council is looking to save £1.5m across the county by switching the lights off between 12am and 5am.

Mr Horan says that this is an impossible idea.

“The money that they are looking at saving will pale into insignificance if a foreign national is killed on this road,” He added.

The road is a popular link from the North Circular to the M25 attracting HGVs and a constant stream of drivers.

It also has a 40mph limit.

The houses at the bottom of the steep hill, it is feared could be at risk.
Mr Horan, 47, said: “I just cannot believe this.

“I was out driving the other night and it was so weird. As I came home people were coming up the road with their full beams on, it startled me.
“If people don’t know about it they could panic. We could end up with a lorry crashing onto these houses.”

Mr Horan who has driven taxis for 13 years is calling for the council to switch the lights back on before there is an accident.

Each town and parish council was asked to list a number of street lights which should remain on, although there was no guarantee that they would be accepted.

Essex County Council has been asked to comment.