Schools traffic calming calls

Traffic at St Aloysius Primary School and St Patrick's Academy. US1414-575cd Picture: Cliff Donaldson
Traffic at St Aloysius Primary School and St Patrick's Academy. US1414-575cd Picture: Cliff Donaldson

Lisburn Councillor Pat Catney has called for traffic calming measures to be installed outside two local schools.

Mr Catney said the measures were urgently needed outside St Patrick’s Academy and St Aloysius Primary School on the Ballinderry Road in Lisburn.

“I have been contacted by parents and staff who are concerned about the safety of their children going to and coming from school, due to the level and speed of the traffic along the Ballinderry Road,” said Mr Catney.

“The schools have been proactive in reminding parents about parking around the school and keeping the area safe. However, children and young people are the most vulnerable, especially when travelling to and from places of education.”

Mr Catney continued: “Whilst I welcome the recent work by the Road Service on resurfacing outside the school, I believe what is needed is the re-introduction of all the road markings.

“Drivers are misusing the bus lane outside the school to speed along the road.

“As drivers, we must take responsibility for the safety of those pedestrians and other drivers on the road.

“I will be contacting Roads Service to seek clarification if road markings will be put back on the road, and I will be asking them re-evaluate the current traffic safety system around the schools.”

Mrs Catherine Milne, Principal of St Aloysius Primary School, said traffic calming measures were badly needed outside the school.

“The school has always had concerns about the level of traffic and the safety of children and we have spoken with the Education and Library Board, as well as with Roads Service,” said Mrs Milne.

“Roads Service said they would look at the situation.We know we are restricted by Road Service criteria but something as simple as additional signage or a pedestrian crossing would be greatly beneficial.”

The Principal of St Patrick’s Academy, Dr Seamus Quinn said: “I have been writing to Roads Service for years asking them to do something about the Ballinderry Road.

“We need a pedestrian crossing or preferably traffic lights somewhere on the road.

“People speed along the road and when they come over the bridge they are immediately outside a primary and post primary school.

“Something needs to be done before there is a tragic accident.”