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Wishaw Mum Calls For Safety Barriers


27/04/16


The mother of the Wishaw youngster who suffered serious injuries after being knocked down by a bus on the Main Street is calling on the council to make the town centre safer for pedestrians.

Nine-year-old Cassidy Preston sustained a broken pelvis, a punctured lung and injured her foot and ribs after she was hit by a bus as she crossed Main Street, near Belhaven Terrace, last September.

Now, eight months on from the traumatic ordeal, mum Michelle is desperate to prevent another family from going through what hers did and is pleading with North Lanarkshire Council to bring back the barriers in the town centre.


Mum-of-four Michelle said: “What my daughter went through was horrific. We didn’t know what quality of life she was going to have but, thankfully, she has made a fantastic recovery. It was a distressing time for all of us. I want to stop this from happening to someone else. The next person might not be so lucky. The new layout on Main Street has made the place chaotic. I have witnessed several people nearly being knocked over. My heart is constantly in my month.

“At the moment there is nothing to stop children from running onto the road when they run ahead of their parents. North Lanarkshire Council need to do something to make the place safe. I have no idea why they got rid of the barriers in the first place but surely it’s time to realise it was a mistake and bring them back. Safety should come first. Who cares if they made the place look untidy.”


A council spokesman said: “Main Street in Wishaw required significant improvements to address the failing carriageway and narrow footways which were uneven and made the area unsafe. Street furniture, especially the barriers located at points along the street, were at the end of their life and creating a safety hazard as pedestrians jumped over them on to the road.

“The barriers had been installed to create a buffer between pedestrians and the road which had become higher than the footways as a result of re-surfacing and repairs over a number of years. At a later date, the steps were installed between the road and footway but these were difficult to access for people with prams or with a disability.

“The Streetscape scheme was designed in line with Scottish Government guidance and good practice to create a balance between a number of conflicting issues and a range of town centre users.

“The design included a narrowed carriageway to reduce traffic speeds and make it easier and safer to cross, wider footways and new signalled crossing points , access to bus stops and parking provision.

“The council would always encourage people, especially young people, to use pedestrian crossings. Installing barriers would compromise all the improvements carried out and cause problems for parking, access to bus stops and servicing requirements.”