Lives put at risk by speed

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CHILDREN’S lives are being put at risk near three Rastrick schools by speeding drivers.

Motorists have been recorded as travelling at almost double the speed limit along Field Top Road where the limit is 30mph.

The road where the checks were carried out is mostly 30mph but only yards away is a 20mph speed limit, a chicane and speed humps, along with a zebra crossing used by thousands of schoolchildren attending Castlefields Infants, Longroyde Junior and Rastrick High Schools.

The figures released by Calderdale Council recorded 49 motorists on May 22 between 1pm and 2pm travelling towards Rastrick High School.

They also monitored the speed of traffic travelling towards Holly Bank Road. The average speed was 32mph and the maximum speed was 39mph.

The headteachers from the three school, Robert Fox, Gemma Elliott and Helen Lennie, said collectively: “We are all shocked to learn that some drivers have been found speeding up to 57mph on Field Top Road.

“It’s a 20mph zone with traffic calming measures and a zebra crossing. All these measures were installed by the council for the benefit of pedestrians and particularly for the safety of the many hundreds of children who attend our three schools. This is a very busy road at key times of the day and reckless driving like this is dangerous, potentially putting children’s lives at risk.”

Chairwoman of Brighouse Road Safety Committee, Ann Rutherford, said it had always been a bad road. “I used to be a crossing patrol woman and that is the only road where I was scared to death because I had a 4x4 speed at me at speed and swerved out of the way at the last minute.

“We have been contacted by residents living at Foxcroft Drive who are having difficulty getting out of the junction there which leads on to this road. The speeds are obviously concerning but they don’t surprise me. It is an area that does cause concern.”

Councillor Ann McAllister (Con, Rastrick) said she was shocked to hear the results. “These kinds of speeds are unacceptable. Motorists should be sticking to the speed limits but at that time of day these results are shocking.

“When cars parking along that road the chances of someone walking out unseen with the person doing 57mph would have no chance of stopping. It is worrying at the best of times but particularly horrific with what could happen.”

Officers from the Lower Valley Neighbourhood Policing Team will be doing speed checks in the area.