Head fears for pupils as drivers fail to slow - The Worcester Observer

Head fears for pupils as drivers fail to slow

Worcester Editorial 23rd Oct, 2013 Updated: 19th Oct, 2016   0

A HEADTEACHER in Worcester has raised concerns over the safety of his pupils after it emerged thousands of motorists were ignoring the speed limit outside his school.

Stephen Gough, headteacher at Dines Green Primary School, said he was staggered by the amount of vehicles which had exceeded the 20mph limit on Tudor Way, with 23,168 recorded in just a two week period.

The figures came to light after highways bosses carried out speed checks on the road between September 10 and September 24, which also revealed only 8,343 drivers had stayed within the limit.

Mr Gough said Tudor Way was becoming an increasingly busy road as people were also using it as a “rat run” and he issued an urgent plea to motorists to slow down.

“The big concerns from our point of view is that somebody will get hurt,” he said. “It is an increasingly busy place, especially first thing in the morning.

“We have an awful lot of children which walk to school, so obviously the concerns which have been raised are to do with their safety.

“I think a lot of it is to do with drivers’ awareness even though the are signs there they don’t seem to be reading them.”

Coun Richard Udall, councillor for the area, has questioned the effectiveness of the 20mph zone, which was introduced over ten years after a long campaign.

“The 20mph limits are not enforced by the police, which make them useless and pointless,” he said. “The county council have to look at new ways to reduce the speed and to make the roads of Dines Green safer.

“We need action to either enforce the limits or take physical engineering works to force traffic to slow down. We simply cannot continue introducing voluntary 20mph limits and expect them to be adhered to. We need new thinking and new measures to slow down traffic in residential areas and outside schools.”

Coun Udall was also shocked after the test clocked a driver travelling at more than 70mph, but highways bosses said it could have been as a result one vehicle driving at 36mph and another travelling in the opposite direction at 35mph.

Coun John Smith, cabinet member for highways at Worcestershire County Council, also insisted the average speed along Tudor Way was 21.5mph.

“The county council takes road safety very seriously, particularly when it concerns the safety of children,” he added.

“The whole of Tudor Way, including the area adjacent to the school, has an advisory 20mph speed limit which the large majority of motorists adhere to.

“The area is supported with traffic calming measures and there have been no reported accidents recorded in the vicinity of the school in the last few years, although we will continue to monitor the area on a regular basis.”


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