Hampshire Now - your County Council magazine

Stop for that lollipop!

Wednesday, 06 November 2013

Hampshire County Council's Road Safety Team is urging road users to remember 'Stop Means Stop' and to respect the county's School Crossing Patrols.

The County Council's Road Safety Team is advising motorists of the importance of School Crossing Patrols and that they help adults as well as children. Motorists are reminded that when approaching a patrol they should always be prepared to slow down or stop. Once the patrol raises the sign in a vertical position drivers must, by law, stop. Drivers must then wait until the patrol has returned to the pavement before moving off.

The campaign, which aims to reduce the number of incidents where drivers are reluctant to stop for School Crossing Patrols, is being advertised on buses and broadcast on radio stations across Hampshire this autumn.

The artwork for the bus advertising has been created by Arjay from Marchwood C of E Infant School and was originally an entry into the School Crossing Patrol of the year awards earlier this year. When the judges saw his picture of his local School Crossing Patrol, Carol Ibbott and her glittery clothing and lollipop stick, they immediately thought it would make a great look for the Council's Stop means Stop campaign.

The new radio commercials feature comedian Arthur Smith and focus on the views of the men and women in the job, and how they enjoy the experience of keeping children safe.

Hampshire County Council's Executive Member for Economy, Transport and Environment, Councillor Seán Woodward, said: "Although the majority of drivers respect the work carried out by the patrols, there is still a small but significant number who ignore the law, abuse the service and put the lives of children and the patrols at risk. Not only is it dangerous for drivers to ignore a School Crossing Patrol, but it is also against the law and they risk a penalty fine of up to £1,000 and three points on their licence."

Arjay said: "Our lollipop lady is always there, even when it is raining really hard. The cars need to stop for her so she can help us to cross the road safely. I am really pleased to see my picture on a bus and hope that people see it and remember that when they see the lollipop they need to stop."

Carol Ibbot, School Crossing Patrol Officer, said: "I find being a school crossing patrol an extremely rewarding job. The children learn that they must concentrate when crossing the road, and they rely on you to help them cross safely. Drivers need to play their part too and drive sensibly near schools and be ready to stop when they approach a school crossing patrol."

Mr Calvert Headteacher of Marchwood C of E Infant School said "We really value the work of Carol, our school crossing patrol, in helping to keep our pupils safe on their walk to school. School crossing patrols act as a very visible sign that young children are crossing the road and drivers should treat the lollipop sign in the same way as a red light."

The Transport Act (2000) permits a School Crossing Patrol Officer to stop traffic and cross any pedestrian that wishes to cross. Motorists should also be aware that the service has the same legal authority to stop traffic, at their designated sites, as Police officers. Failure to stop can result in a minimum of 3 points on an individual's licence / a fine of up to £1,000, or both.

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