KINDERGARTEN children are running a gauntlet of speeding motorists according to Minimbah school principal, Jenny Brown.
The school has sought help from the NSW Roads and Maritime Service, local MP Adam Marshall, and the Armidale police, however, the problem continues.
Ms Brown said it was only a matter of time before a child was hit.
“I’ve seen dogs get hit on that road many times and I’m frightened one day it will be a child,” she said.
“You get trucks screaming down at 80 kilometers per hour.
Long Swamp Road is a thoroughfare for cars and trucks accessing Council’s waste management facility.
The school says it has more than 20 students, some as young as five, living in houses off Cookes Road who need to cross the road daily.
Northern Tablelands MP Adam Marshall said the school had raised the problem with him, which he took to the local police and the RMS on the school’s behalf.
“The school now has flashing lights in place which should help alert motorists to the school zone,” he said.
But Ms Brown said the lights did little to slow down the trucks and cars.
“I don’t know why, when they see the flashing lights of a school zone they can’t slow down,” she said.
Last year the school lodged a request with the Road and Maritime Service to have a supervisor assist children cross the road during school zone hours.
The school’s application was denied.
A ROADS and Maritime Service spokesperson said all schools were assessed against the same criteria and the school did not meet the minimum criteria of 50 unaccompanied children per hour across a road carrying 300 cars per hour within the morning and afternoon school zones.
“Apparently there is not enough traffic and not enough children to justify it,” Ms Brown said.
“But you only need one child to get hit by one car.
“The police came out after we contacted them and booked a few people but unless that happens every day it’s not going to stop the problem.”
Following the school’s denied application, they advertised for a volunteer in their school newsletter but said they didn’t receive much of a response.
“Having a little bit of financial incentive would help,” Ms Brown said.
“Maybe there is someone on the pension who would like to supplement their income a little bit.”
Mr Marshall said he would be more than willing to take the school’s case forward again.
“I haven't heard from the school since my visit, but if there are concerns again the principal need only flick me an email or give me a buzz,” he said.
“I'd be more than happy to approach the police again on behalf of the school to request additional patrols.
PIC: From right, Year 1 student Latrell Vale, 6, and kindergarten student Karla Collins-Moran, 5, at the Minimbah school crossing on Long Swamp Road.
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