HIGHWAYS bosses have given a cool reception to calls for a 50 mph limit on a stretch of the A64 between York and Tadcaster.

Local Selby district councillor Richard Musgrave called for a reduction in the 70 mph limit at Bilbrough Top after the latest in a spate of accidents in March.

The three-vehicle crash happened less than 100 metres from the scene of a fatal crash in late 2012, and close to where a pedestrian was killed last November.

Cllr Musgrave and Selby and Ainsty MP Nigel Adams asked for a meeting with the Highways Agency and North Yorkshire Police to discuss a lower limit and various other suggestions to improve safety on the bendy stretch of dual carriageway.

Cllr Musgrave said yesterday that the meeting took place earlier this week, and he was grateful agency and police representatives had taken the time to attend and explain the hard work they were putting in to make the road safer.

"However, it's frustrating that we haven't been able to pinpoint the cause of so many serious accidents," he said.

"The stretch of the A64 a mile either side of Bilbrough Top is a particular concern to me and I am still not convinced that a 70mph limit is appropriate in that area."

An agency spokeswoman said safety was its highest priority and it constantly monitored accidents on the network to look for patterns, causes and trends that indicated a need for improvements which would lead to a reduction in accidents.

“The data for the A64 from Tadcaster to Bilborough shows an accident frequency rate which is less than half of the national average for a road of this type," she said. "The figures do show however that the severity of these accidents are higher than average.

“The proposal for a 50mph speed limit was not mentioned at the meeting. However, our road safety engineers have not recommended a permanent reduced speed limit as an effective means to address the accidents occurring at this location and the police would need to be consulted to determine if a 50mph limit was enforceable.”

She added that the agency would be carrying out a complete resurfacing of the A64 in this area later in the year to ensure the road condition remained safe.