Schoolgirl injured in hit-and-run joins protest to stop ‘rat run’ for cars

A 12-year-old schoolgirl who was knocked sideways by a speeding car in a hit-and-run on her way to school is joining a group calling for road safety changes.

Mum Anna Bruen said her daughter was ‘very,very lucky’ to escape with bruising to her leg and arm as her classmates heard the ‘woosh’ of the speeding car and caught her as she fell.

The incident happened on a back route being used by drivers trying to escape the Teignmouth Bitton Park Road holdups at rush hour.

It is also the route the school recommends for pupils to use in order to avoid the high levels of pollution on Bitton Park Road.

The junction of Landscore Road leading to the Keatings Lane cut through

The junction of Landscore Road leading to the Keatings Lane cut through

A petition has been set up by Amy McCarthy calling for an end to the Rat Run.

Amy said she is calling on Devon County Council to:

  1. Close Keatings Lane to motor traffic, except for access.
  2. Introduce a 20 limit on Landscore Road
  3. Create traffic calming on Landscore Road

Teignmouth Community School pupils and their parents have now lobbied councillors, calling for road safety improvements to Landscore Road and Keatings Lane in Teignmouth.

The hit-and-run happened last Friday on the corner of Landscore Road and Grove Road, where there is very little pavement.

Recently there was another near miss, leaving a second girl frightened. Parents say there are more and more incidents, that make them fear for their children’s safety.

 

Councillor David Cox has added an agenda item to be discussed at tonight’s meeting of Teignmouth Town Council on Tuesday April 2 at 6.30pm. A statement from a group of the pupils will be read to the Council. 

Cllr Cox said: “We need to listen to these young citizens and act on their concerns. They have shown a maturity beyond their years, in campaigning on this very important matter.”

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Teignmouth Community School head James O’Connell said: “I am really impressed by the way TCS pupils have put a well-argued and researched case across to civic leaders. I hope the town council will support our pupil’s plea and we can build a coalition for road safety changes with local police and the school.”

Watch the video below for advice on what to do if you are involved in a collision

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Mrs Bruen, who is herself a teacher, said it was the moment every parent dreads when she had a call to say her daughter had been hit by a car on the way to school.

“Something needs to be done urgently, our children’s lives are at risk. This is the route authorities recommend our children use to walk to school, to avoid poor air quality along Bitton Park Road, yet our children are at far more risk from speeding drivers than pollution.”

 

Parent Any McCarthy said: “ Landscore Road and Keatings Lane have no pavement, it is the main route to walk to school. It is also the route recommend to avoid pollution along Bitton Park Road. However it is also a  rat run  for drivers seeking to avoid the traffic queues on Bitton Park Road. Many choose to speed along Landscore without any regard for pedestrians. Closing Keatings Lane except for access and a 20 limit on Landscore Road would end the  rat run  and make the road a lot safer.”

Police are asking members of the public to come forward if they haveany information about the hit-and-run incident.