Bus fears

Par­ents’ fear af­ter coun­cil’s school bus switch

Rutherglen Reformer - - Front Page - Edel Ke­nealy

Par­ents liv­ing in New­ton Farm say a new pick-up point for the Cairns Pri­mary School bus is putting their chil­dren in dan­ger.

South La­nark­shire Coun­cil this week moved the pick-up point for New­ton Farm res­i­dents from the bus stop at Bale Court to the stop off the round­about at Gray­line Av­enue.

Par­ents liv­ing in New­ton Farm say a new pickup point for the Cairns Pri­mary School bus is putting kids in dan­ger.

South La­nark­shire Coun­cil this week moved the pickup point for New­ton Farm res­i­dents from the bus stop at Bale Court to the stop-off the round­about at Gray­line Av­enue.

The move from the mid­dle to the back of the New­ton Farm de­vel­op­ment comes af­ter a num­ber of Bale Court res­i­dents com­plained par­ents were us­ing their car park to drop off and pick up chil­dren from the bus.

But the change — par­ents ar­gue — will force chil­dren as young as five to walk al­most one mile to the bus stop at a much busier point of the road.

Marri McCarville, whose pri­mary one son gets the bus each morn­ing, said the school bus has not been able to pull in along­side the pave­ment be­cause a First Bus is al­ready parked there.

Ex­plain­ing the stop is of­ten used by driv­ers tak­ing a rest, Marri said: “I have ad­vised South La­nark­shire Coun­cil that there’s al­ways a First­bus parked at the Gray­line stop and I have no idea how the driv­ers are go­ing to get chil­dren loaded onto the bus if the bus stop is blocked.

“I also have sig­nif­i­cant con­cerns about mak­ing the kids walk all the way to the bot­tom of the es­tate.

“We have to be one mile away from school to ap­ply for free trans­port, but this new stop is one mile from a lot of peo­ple’s houses.”

She added: “The coun­cil say they have sent out a safety of­fi­cer. I don’t un­der­stand how it has man­aged to pass.

“Most of the kids are in P1, they are only five years old and have just started pri­mary .”

Marri was one of many par­ents to ex­press con­cern about the bus stop move, with sev­eral par­ents tak­ing to Face­book to record their out­rage.

One fa­ther on the Par­ents and Car­ers of Cairns Pri­mary School Face­book page said: “I am also not happy about this and will phone the coun­cil and com­plain. The pro­posed new area is not safe or prac­ti­cal.”

An­other mother added: “South La­nark­shire Coun­cil should re­ally put a lol­lipop per­son on that part of the road. It is crazy the way cars drive around it, so now they have a far busier place to ne­go­ti­ate.”

Des Dick­son, head of ed­u­ca­tion at the coun­cil, said: “In re­sponse to con­cerns raised by res­i­dents a de­ci­sion has been taken to move the pickup point for pupils.

“SPT, ed­u­ca­tion re­sources and roads and trans­porta­tion have all been in­volved in as­sess­ing the new lo­ca­tion, and are com­fort­able that it of­fers a suit­able area for pupils to con­gre­gate. The sit­u­a­tion will con­tinue to be mon­i­tored.

“We would urge par­ents who are con­cerned that chil­dren re­quire su­per­vi­sion on the route to and from school, to en­sure they are ac­com­pa­nied by an adult.”

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