HOSPITAL bosses are planning to build an internal ring road in a bid to cut congestion on its surrounding roads.

During peak times, motorists are creating “dangerous” conditions as cars queue along Prittlewell Chase to get into Southend Hospital’s car park.

Residents say at its worst, it is sometimes nearly impossible to access the hospital as a combination of the bus stops and the busy Southend traffic clog up the carriageway.

Eleanor Murphy, 59, of Fairfax Drive, said: “Something needs to be done about the ridiculously dangerous queues for the car park.

“Every day is the same. As the cars block where the ambulances come out - even though there’s a yellow box - they also block the bus stops and this holds up the traffic trying to get past.”

In March, the Echo reported how bus company Arriva is now refusing to use one of two stops outside the hospital because of the lengthy queues. But now the Echo can reveal the hospital hopes to build a new internal ring road where drivers can queue for a space, rather than waiting on the main highway.

The plans came to light in a licensing agenda which shows the hospital is planning to move a taxi rank to make room for the ring road.

In the report, it states: “During the busy times, buses are unable to stop at the designated stops and passengers have to mount and dismount the buses in the outside lane into traffic because of cars queuing on the bus stops.”

Eamon Malone, the hospital’s chief estates officer, said: “Advanced plans are in place to create a ring road within the hospital grounds, linking the various car parks together. This will potentially make it easier for patients and visitors to move around the hospitals and help alleviate or remove traffic queuing on the roads.

“The development is dependent on our being able to access the £118million of investment allocated to support our clinical service changes.

“Consequently the development will remain in the planning stages until we have a decision from the Health Secretary of State, which we hope will be over the summer.”

The plans have been welcomed by Prittlewell ward councillor Kevin Buck, who has previously spoken up about the dangers caused by the congestion.

He said: “I would welcome any action taken by the hospital that would alleviate the congestion problems there.

“If it works, then it will be great for the area.

“It has got to the point where relatives are dropping loved ones off and then joining the queue for a space because they know it’s going to take ages to find one so anything to combat this would be more than welcome.”