Ignorant drivers are putting lives at risk

Project manager Donald Murray, Shade Primary School headteacher Jan Dawson and sergeant Michael Bowden by the roadworks on Rochdale Road, Shade, Todmorden.
Project manager Donald Murray, Shade Primary School headteacher Jan Dawson and sergeant Michael Bowden by the roadworks on Rochdale Road, Shade, Todmorden.

IGNORANT drivers are putting lives at risk by disregarding temporary traffic lights on Rochdale Road, Todmorden.

Safety concerns have been raised about motorists jumping the red light and posing a danger to pedestrians and other road users.

Now Environment Agency contractors Volker Stevin, the headteacher at nearby Shade Primary School and the Upper Valley Neighbourhood Policing Team (NPT) are urging drivers to pay attention to traffic signals at the roadworks which are in place while the flood defence scheme project is carried out.

Jan Dawson, headteacher at Shade Primary School, has been worried about the safety of children using the pedestrian crossing near the junction of Rochdale Road and Knowlwood Road.

“I’m appalled by the disregard that some drivers have for our children, parents and crossing patrol, all for the sake of saving a few seconds,” she said.

“It’s not that long just to wait a couple of minutes for the lights to change.

“It’s so dangerous. It’s only because our children are so well trained not to step off the pavement that there hasn’t been an accident.”

The roadworks have been in place for several months.

When the flood defence scheme work first started, the Environment Agency and the police put out a joint appeal urging motorists to pay attention to the traffic signals, but the problem is persisting.

Volker Stevin project manager Donald Murray said: “We are concerned about the safety of the workforce and the safety of the children.

“We want to alert drivers to the consequences of their actions.

“The last thing we want to happen is for someone to get knocked down.

“We have been employing the police one day a week, trying to educate drivers that their actions create safety issues.

“We don’t want any accidents. If a kid was crossing the road when a car came through, they would have absolutely no chance.

“Our main concern is safety for everybody.”

Members of the upper valley NPT have been conducting patrols on the road

Upper valley inspector Dave Browning said: “This is partnership working to ensure everyone using this stretch of road stays safe.

“Traffic laws are not put there to irritate drivers, they are in place for safety reasons.

“Anyone who flouts the law in this respect is both endangering their safety and other road users.”