Crossing is ‘accident waiting to happen’

August 03 2015

A GROUP of parents, who have been lobbying for increased measures at a “dangerous” crossing in Wellington Hill West, have secured funding for improvements – but feel more needs to be done to enhance its safety.

A GROUP of parents, who have been lobbying for increased measures at a “dangerous” crossing in Wellington Hill West, have secured funding for improvements – but feel more needs to be done to enhance its safety.

A petition, set up by campaigners from Horfield CEVC Primary, calls for a “safe, visible, light-controlled crossing” to replace the zebra, which is regularly used by children walking to and from the school, by the Beehive pub.

Parents say that drivers rush through Wellington Hill West, failing to stop in time for families waiting at the crossing.

They also say that local residents in the immediate vicinity have reported frequent brake screeching around the area.

The petition, which has received 55 signatures, was presented at a Full Council meeting last month.

Presented by lead petitioner Libby Bloor, it stated: “This crossing is used daily by numerous children attending Horfield CEVC Primary School, and there are far too many incidences of cars not stopping or screeching to a halt when pedestrians are already on the crossing.”

It also referred to a recent study, which found that accidents involving pedestrians are more likely to happen on or close to zebra crossings, while properly controlled crossings reduce this likelihood by 80%.

The group has already managed to persuade the two local neighbourhood partnerships to release £5k each from their Minor Traffic Schemes budget to implement better safety measures.

Proposals include installing bright halos around the Belisha beacons, laying rougher tarmac to slow traffic, removing one of the tree which obscures signage, erecting pre-zebra warning signs, funding a lollipop person, and carrying out a full traffic speed risk assessment.

But Ms Bloor says that it's too important an issue to be left just to the neighbourhood partnership.

One mother Jenni O'Connor previously told the Bishopston Voice: "My daughter, who was four at the time, and I were crossing in the summer term, almost half way over with cars on the near side having stopped, when a woman speeding in the other direction, talking on her phone, simply failed to see us and carried on at about 40mph right under our noses.

"My daughter was on her scooter and if she had been even two feet ahead of me, it would have been in all probability a fatal accident. I was shaking for days, and she used to cry and ask me to carry her across for a couple of weeks afterwards.

"The woman did yell ‘sorry’ out of the window before zooming off – which is a trifle more than the V-signs and sarcastic waves families often get if we gesticulate to drivers that they should be stopping for pedestrians."

Wellington Hill Crossing