Council chiefs have launched a stinging attack on a pensioner who sprayed road markings on the approach to a 'dangerous' junction - and said he put himself and other road users at risk.
Peter Sharratt, 71, sprayed arrows indicating the lanes that motorists needed to be in near the junction of the A50 and A5033 in Knutsford, Cheshire.
Sharratt wrote to Cheshire East Council with his concerns after witnessing “a number of near crashes” as a result of the lack of road markings.
But after being given what he called an “unhelpful response”, Sharratt armed himself with spray cans of white paint and set out to fix the road himself at 4.30am on Sunday morning.
He spray painted the instructions for motorists, which he's dubbed “mark out to help out” and used his car to block off the road as he worked.
However, his actions have been branded 'unwise' with the council saying he would have been to blame had there been any accidents while he was marking the roads.
The retired journalist said: "I thought it was a very dangerous situation.
"I regularly drive on this road and people are very confused about which lane they should be in.
"I had witnessed a number of near crashes on the roundabout by people not knowing which lane they should be in.
“I wrote to the council about this only to receive a perfunctory and unhelpful response.
"They didn’t say they were able to do anything any time soon."
Sharratt said the original markings “were there for a very good reason”, and the work to replace them should be “at the top” of the council’s priority list.
He added: "It beggars belief that the council is now relying on a 71-year-old pensioner with a spray can to do the work we already pay them for."
A spokesperson for the council said it was planning to carry out the work but lack of money had delayed progress: “Mr Sharratt may feel that his actions in spray painting his own road markings were well motivated, however, this was a dangerous action, which placed himself and other road users at risk.
"It was an unwise thing to do and in the event of any incidents, then the onus of responsibility would fall on the individual, in this case Mr Sharratt.
"The council has already scheduled works at this roundabout junction to reinstate existing road markings and undertake additional patching works, which will be carried out at the end of this month."
The Highways Act 1980 makes is an offence for any member of the public to mark their own lines on the highway without the consent of the highway authority.
Line painting works should only be carried out by approved council contractors.
Fellow local Jim Burgess backed up Sharratt’s actions, highlighting the dangers posed by the lack of markings in a letter to the local newspaper.
He said some drivers don’t realise that the left lane at the roundabout is for turning left while the right lane is for going straight and turning right.
In his letter, Burgess urged the council to get the road markings renewed “as a matter of urgency before there is a really serious accident”