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Pupils take to the streets to tackle school traffic problems in Braunton

By NDJPeter  |  Posted: December 09, 2013

  • Children from Southmead Primary School target speeding drivers during the two-day traffic operation.

  • Children from Southmead Primary School target speeding drivers during the two-day traffic operation.

  • Police and civil parking enforcement officers moved on more than 20 drivers during the two day operation.

  • Concern has been growing over the dangers posed to children leaving Braunton Academy and Southmead Primary School.

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PUPILS from two Braunton schools have taken to the village’s streets in a bid to raise awareness of the area’s chronic traffic problems.

More than a dozen children from Braunton Academy and Southmead Primary School joined police officers for the two-day operation on Wrafton Road last week.

The days of action saw the pupils from the two schools take control of mobile speed guns to monitor and log the level of traffic at school opening and closing times on Thursday and Friday.

The kids were also joined by civil parking enforcement officers, who challenged more than 20 drivers who had parked on double yellow lines and in the schools’ bus bays.

Sergeant Paul Jones said although fines were ready to be issued to the worst offenders, the purpose of the operation was to educate drivers of the dangers they may pose.

He said: “It’s all about education. This morning we challenged one man who said he had a 30 minute waiting time on double yellow lines - which is most certainly not the case.

“There’s seems to be a general lack of knowledge.

“Obviously both the schools are very much in support and I would suggest most parents would be also in support. It’s about child safety, road safety and about the safety of adults.”

Although the street has a legal speed limit of 30mph, during school opening and closing times an advisory limit of 20mph is put in place.

During the operation, more than 200 vehicles were logged travelling at more than 20mph, with a top speed of 31mph.

Andy Frisby, PCSO for Braunton, said the traffic issues along the street had been of concern for a long time.

He said: “This has been going on for years. We have got two schools here with a lot of pupils, there’s always going to be a problem.

“We have got 1,000 kids all trying to leave at roughly the same time.

“There’s an advisory 20mph limit in place which we are asking people to adhere to, and we are asking parents who are collecting their children to consider parking further away.”

The data collected during the operation will be analysed by Devon County Highways Authority, who will consider the implementation of further traffic calming measures along the road.

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  • Fatalist  |  December 09 2013, 11:13AM

    Simple. Double yellows along Wrafton Road both sides, for at least 400 metres in each direction from the schools, and do the same in the nearby section of Barton Lane. Whilst the Police are busy making local headlines on this subject perhaps they would do better to petition Devon County Council on the issue, because the readers here aren't going to make any significant changes. Why? Many of those abusing the facility are the round robin school run mothers and fathers! I'm sure DCC have some cans of yellow paint and a couple of 20mph signs. Creation of a traffic wardens paradise will also be a fantastic money-spinner for the authorities, and whatever is wrong with kids doing a little walking come to that - there are many of us who used to walk or cycle some distance to school, and it did absolutely no harm to us.

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