Taieri College school patrol member Zac Henry (12), from
Mosgiel, waits while his fellow pupils cross Factory Rd.
Photo by Gregor Richardson.
Taieri College staff are calling for more courtesy from
drivers around a school crossing on one of Mosgiel's busiest
Taieri College deputy principal Mike Newell said the crossing
in Factory Rd, between Reid Ave and Dryden St, was in an
extremely busy area, with Reid Ave being an access road to
Peter Johnstone Park.
Drivers also used Factory Rd to get to Silverstream School
nearby, and cars exited the Taieri College driveway.
''So sometimes you get cars coming at you from four different
ways,'' he said.
He said the problem was getting traffic to slow and stop so
children could use the crossing.
School crossings, also known as kea crossings, are unlike
pedestrian (zebra) crossings because they generally only
operate before and after school.
When school crossings are operating, a fluorescent orange
''Children'' sign will be displayed, along with a school
patrol ''Stop'' sign, which swings out into the road.
The Road Code says when a school patrol stop sign is
displayed, vehicles coming from both directions must stop
until all signs have been pulled in.
But if there is a raised traffic island in the middle of the
crossing - like on Factory Rd - drivers need only stop and
give way to pedestrians on their side of the road.
Mr Newell said the school crossing operators used an
''independent system'' - when you can see your side is clear
you can put the sign out.
The problem was, cars on the opposite side were not slowing
and stopping, to allow those operators to put their sign out.
While drivers did not legally have to stop if there were no
pedestrians on their side of the traffic island, Mr Newell
said some common courtesy would make the area much safer.
He said there was a near miss last year when ''a little old
lady managed to drive between the stop sign out and the
traffic island'' while children were using the crossing.