After years of discussions, a road safety scheme has been installed by Shropshire Council outside Ludlow Primary School on Sandpits Road. It doesn’t work. If anything, it speeds up traffic approaching the school gates.
“This is not the scheme we expected”, says Shropshire Councillor for Ludlow East Tracey Huffer. “After years of discussions, a scheme for improving road safety outside the school has been implemented. There are new signs and new road markings. The centrepiece of the scheme is a raised table, a wide road hump. But the table is too low. It has no effect on the speed of traffic. If anything, it is speeding traffic up because it is so smooth. It is a hump with no bump.”
Tracey is now calling for an urgent site meeting with highways officers, parents and residents to discuss how the scheme can be improved.
There has been a campaign for a safety scheme outside the school by parents, school governors and councillors for several years. The main concerns have been traffic travelling faster than is safe and careless parking. A scheme was approved a year ago and was installed after an extensive closure of Sandpits Road by Seven Trent Water and other utility providers.
Tracey Huffer continues:
“Sandpits Road is for the most part a bumpy ride with the usual patchwork of road repairs and growing potholes. But once drivers get outside the school, there is smooth tarmac. Drivers are picking up speed.
“We had understood that the raised table would be like that outside Happy Shopper at the junction of Sandpits, Livesey and Whitbread Roads. That table gives a distinctive clunk as you drive over it. Just sufficient to encourage vehicles to slow down without damaging vehicles.
“But you don’t notice the raised table outside the school. It is a smoother drive than the rest of Sandpits Road. There is no bump to remind people that they should be driving slower.”
“The new signs and road markings are an improvement. But previously the advisory 20mph warning signs can’t been seen any more. That reallty doesn’t help”
New and old signs
“Parking has been banned near the school gates between 8am and 5pm. That’s another good move. Parents dropping off or picking up children, delivery vehicles and visitors to a nearby care home have often parked in the zig zag zone outside the school. Saving a couple of minutes for the convenience of drivers was taking priority over the safety of schoolchildren.
“This scheme is not what anyone was expecting. If it to be the model for traffic calming schemes outside schools across the county, then they are doomed to failure.
“We need an urgent meeting with highways officers to determine what can be done about the Sandpits Road scheme which is an obvious failure.”
The raised table is 10cm high and the gradient from the existing road to the table top is 1:15.
There is no suggestion that the vehicles featured in this article are breaking the law.