Zigzags parking ‘puts children at risk’

CHILDREN are being put at risk by drivers parking on a busy pedestrian crossing in the heart of Emersons Green, a resident has warned.

Drivers of cars and vans are frequently parking on the zigzag lines either side of the zebra crossing on Emerson Way between the library, village hall and retail park.

The situation has been highlighted by Denis Connolly, who says some companies regularly use the zigzags to make routine stops.

Parking or overtaking on zigzag lines is strictly prohibited by the Road Traffic Act, carrying a three point penalty with a £100 fine. They are there to provide oncoming traffic with a clear view of the crossing, to ensure drivers can see pedestrians as they approach.

But Denis, who regularly uses or passes the crossing, said parking on the lines has become increasingly common on Emersons Way in the past 18 months, with many motorists using it as an extension of the small on-street parking bay opposite the village hall.

He said: “Over 50% of the time I pass there will be somebody parked on the zigzags.

“The Royal Mail seem to do it every time they come to empty the post box outside the library.

“It’s also people nipping in for a quick shop and treating it as a free space.

“There’s no excuse for it.”

Denis has raised his concerns with the police. He says one van driver threatened him after seeing him take a picture, while another, in a security van making a cash collection, incorrectly told him: “I’m a security guard in uniform, I can park where I like.”

Denis believes the parked cars are creating an “appalling” risk to children using the crossing, which links the shops and Emersons Green Park.

He said: “It’s a potential disaster.”

Avon & Somerset police are investigating Denis’s reports.

A spokesperson said: “Our neighbourhood policing team has been working to proactively police parking in the Emerson Way area of Emersons Green following concerns raised by residents. The area is regularly patrolled by the team – along with other areas of the village – parking prevention measures have been put in place, education given to drivers and collaborative work done with the local authority parking services.

“These parking restrictions are in place for a reason and anyone seen to be ignoring these will be dealt with when possible.” A Royal Mail spokesperson said: “It’s very important the Highway Code is followed by our employees. This incident will be raised with local management.”