Action needed to protect our kids

Parents have renewed a plea for more safety measures after a girl aged four was knocked down and injured outside a Motherwell school.
Road outside St Brendan's Primary SchoolRoad outside St Brendan's Primary School
Road outside St Brendan's Primary School

The youngster was hit by a car as she crossed Barons Road on her way to the nursery class at St Brendan’s.

She suffered a broken bone in her foot and was treated at Wishaw General Hospital.

North Lanarkshire Council insisted this week that if the traffic situation outside the school and nearby Muirhouse Primary is to be improved parents must stop parking on the road.

However, the parent councils at both schools say that is not the only issue and the authority should consider a one-way system to reduce congestion.

It’s less than two years since another schoolgirl suffered minor injuries when she was knocked down as she left St Brendan’s.

After the latest accident last Wednesday morning one parent said: “We’re lucky there hasn’t yet been a fatality on that road. When school’s starting and finishing it’s horrendous and parents don’t help by abandoning cars on kerbs and street corners.”

Earlier this year the St Brendan’s and Muirhouse parent councils got together to discuss road safety and after last week’s incident politicians were urged to view the parking situation for themselves.

Central Scotland MSP Graham Simpson was joined by local councillors Alan Valentine and Kenneth Duffy on a walkabout with parent council members and police officers. The area’s other two councillors, Nathan Wilson and Agnes Magowan, were unable to attend but also lent their support.

St Brendan’s parent council secretary Kathleen Cosgrove said during the visit officers had to ask drivers who had parked irresponsibly to move their cars.

She stated: “Both parent councils want to see parking restrictions on Barons Road, say between 8.30am and 9.30am then again between 2.30pm and 4pm. North Lanarkshire Council should also consider a one-way system given the amount of traffic that’s coming into the street.

“The local authority says parents should use the car park at St Brendan’s Church, but that’s not big enough.”

Mrs Cosgrove said the politicians have promised to raise their concerns with the roads officials, but North Lanarkshire Council insisted responsibility lies withe parents.

A spokesman said: “The key issue is that parents should not be parking outside the school — there is no reason to be parking there.

“We have asked parents repeatedly to use the nearby St Brendan’s Church car park in mornings and afternoons.

“We are planning a presentation to both sets of children to discuss road safety and explain the ways in which they can improve the situation.”