Cross­ing pleas unan­swered

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS - By AN­DREA O’NEIL

A death or in­jury out­side Post­gate School is wait­ing to hap­pen, say par­ents and a city coun­cil­lor who have been fight­ing for years for a pedes­trian cross­ing out­side the school.

Porirua City coun­cil­lor Anita Baker in­vited Kapi-Mana News to stand on Omapere St at 3pm last week to wit­ness the dan­ger­ous road cross­ings she says hap­pen ev­ery day. In 20 min­utes dozens of school­child­ren crossed the road among heavy traf­fic, with at least one child caus­ing a car to brake sud­denly to avoid an ac­ci­dent.

A path from Post­gate School spills pupils onto Omapere St just south of the BP sta­tion by Post­gate Dr af­ter school fin­ishes.

‘‘I have been elected for two years and noth­ing’s hap­pened,’’ Ms Baker says. ‘‘I’ll come and paint the white lines my­self soon. I’m fed up.’’

Var­i­ous rea­sons have been given for the years of de­lay, from the dif­fi­culty of mov­ing a bus stop by the lane, to the lane not be­ing an of­fi­cial school en­trance, she says.

Ms Baker has of­fered to set up a cross­ing pa­trol by the lane but has been told the road is too dan­ger­ous to al­low a pa­trol.

Par­ent Derek Smith says the school community has been ask­ing for a cross­ing for four years.

‘‘Ev­ery time we got to a cer­tain point they say ‘we can’t’,’’ he says.

Post­gate pupils say the road is dan­ger­ous and they want a cross­ing.

‘‘There’s been close calls with peo­ple cross­ing the road, es­pe­cially lit­tle kids,’’ 12-year-old Kshana Fa’amasino says.

Porirua City Coun­cil tech­ni­cal ser­vices man­ager Ge­off Mar­shall says other road safety projects take pri­or­ity over the Omapere cross­ing.

‘‘Our pri­or­i­ties are based on ac­ci­dent stats. This is a clas­sic dis­cus­sion about whether we wait for an ac­ci­dent to hap­pen,’’ he says.

Mun­gavin Ave and War­spite Ave have high car crash rates and need more ur­gent at­ten­tion.

The cost of road safety projects means only a third of them can be done each year, Mr Mar­shall says.

The coun­cil is in­ves­ti­gat­ing the Omapere cross­ing again this week, he says.

Dan­ger zone: A Post­gate School pupil had a close call cross­ing Omapere St last week. Years of re­quests for a pedes­trian cross­ing have been re­fused.

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