Major feedback from our YourMove survey conducted in September was that crossing Kooyong Rd at Newey St was difficult and many respondents suggested applying for a crosswalk attendant (or lollypop person).
I know from my personal experience of crossing at this intersection and conversations with other families that there is hesitation to use the crossing and because there are just so many cars. I decided that before we could start an application, I should do a survey myself to see whether an application was warranted as the Police Department require minimum pedestrian and vehicle movements within the area. At least 20 students and 200 cars using the crossing in the hour before and the hour after school qualifies for a salaried Traffic Warden supplied by WA Police.- At least 10 students and 100 cars qualifies for an unpaid Traffic Warden with training and uniform supplied by the WA Police, but the school would need to recruit a volunteer.
I grabbed some snacks and staked out a spot to watch the intersection one fine November morning and afternoon. The actual survey requires data from 7:40-8:40, and 3:00-4:00 but I was a little short on time and only surveyed from 7:50-8:40 and 3:00-3:30. I am confident that I didn't miss any students during the non-surveyed time though.
In the 26 minutes from 7:49-8:15 we had no students crossing the intersection. There were however 296 cars, 19 heavy vehicles 5 adult bike commuters and 4 adults pedestrians. I didn't get much of a chance to tuck into my snacks, as the traffic just did not let up.
In the 15 mins between 8:15 and 8:30 we had 180 cars, 4 Heavy Vehilces/Buses and 8 students (4 bikes and 4 walking) plus 2 adult cyclists and 6 adults pedestrians. As I sat and watched, 2 of the students waited up to 5 minutes to find a safe break in the constant traffic.
In the afternoon it was a similar story of an enormous amount of vehicle movements. With 344 car movements and 7 heavy traffic movements in 30 minutes. There were 7 students on bikes and 3 students walking. With 4 adult cyclists and 8 adults pedestrians.
This survey gives me hope that with a co-ordinated effort we can have a successful application in the coming months. I then posted on our P & F facebook page to ask for experssions of interest to co-ordinate an effort.
There was a lot of interest, so I created a poll on doodle.com to see how popular the crossing would be if we we had a prefect week. I asked families to say which mornings and afternoons they would cross and how many students would be crossing.
When the results came in it was clear that we weren't going to be eligible for a fully paid crosswalk attendant even on the best day. The average day looks to be between 15-20 students who would cross at the intersection. This would mean that we could be eligible to apply for a Type B crossing attendant. The problem here is that we would need a volunteer, or group of volunteers.
To keep all interested parties in the loop and get as much assistance as possible I started a Facebook messenger group with the parents of the interested families. In the group we discussed different ways that we could advertise for a volunteer. Some of the group went to speak to the local Men's Shed and some to the Senior Citizens Association. Another has agreed to contact the church. We will be advertising over the school holidays for a Volunteer(s) and will take the application further in the new year if we can garner any interest.
Another great outcome from the Facebook conversation is that our local councillors Robert Rossi and Deborah Sessions have shown support of making the crossing safer. Robert Rossi has agreed to start the process to have a "50km/hr in a built up zone" sign put up by main roads to help slow some of the cars down.
This story is related to Apply for a new school crosswalk and attendant
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