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Satnav problems to be corrected

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Road woes for motorists might come to an end following new plans proposed by ministers to ensure that satellite navigation systems do not send motorists down inappropriate routes.

Transport minister Norman Baker has said that local authorities should be given the power to decide how roads in their vicinity should be categorised as they have better knowledge about their area.

Making changes such as downgrading an A road into a B road will require approval from the Department for Transport (DfT) under the new plans.

As part of the proposed system, the DfT will also have to take matters into its own hands if there are disagreements regarding a decision taken by the council.

The move, which will reduce the chance of congestion and will regulate traffic better, is expected to help car insurance holders use routes that are less harmful to their vehicles.

Mr Barker, who is starting consultation into road network policy, said: "We are also using this as an opportunity to invite new ideas of tackling some of the problems caused by satnavs, for example lorries being directed down unsuitable roads.

"We want to hear suggestions as to how the current system could be improved - and how councils could better work with satnav companies."

The consultation has been published on the official website of the DfT and will stay open until May 1.

© Press Association 2011