As children in Redditch go back to school this week there is now a new road safety initiative outside many of the schools. New flashing 20 mph advisory speed limit signs have now been installed near the school.
The sign (see image right) has a child crossing warning sign, flashing lights and the wording “Max speed 20 when lights flash”. The sign is an advisory sign featuring a warning red triangle rather than the mandatory speed limit red circle sign, but it is hoped that this will reduce the speed of drivers passing the school during times when children are crossing the road, making it safer for school children.
I think this is a good scheme. Anything that raises the awareness of schools and helps to reduce the risk to young children is a positive step. I do believe this will have a positive impact in making the roads safer.
The scheme does not cover all times when children are arriving and leaving school (with children attending before / after school clubs at different times or that may be only part-time at pre-school) and it is only advisory (compared with compulsory 20 mph speed limit that this petition calls for). The biggest concern I have is with the drivers that habitually ignore the speed limits (compulsory as well as advisory), ignore safety signs and drive straight through crossings without any concern about anyone crossing. I regularly see such driving at a different school in Worcestershire which is not included in the current scheme, but already has active signs that drivers ignore. In this post I refer to one example of many where a car speeds through a zebra crossing.
This is a good step in the right direction, but there’s is still more that can be done to make roads safe for children going to and from school.
Links to road safety information
- Road safety advise from RoSPA
- Kids Cross Safely – A campaign to make it safer for children to travel to and from school
- RoadPeace the national charity for road crash victims
- Petition to make compulsory 20 mph speed limits and safe pedestrian crossings near schools
- Worcestershire County Council – Speed Management Strategy
- Worcestershire County Council report from previous trials