Mums’ warning

By Tania Martin
A GROUP of mothers who fear for their children’s safety have called for something to be done about motorists speeding through a school crossing in Mt Evelyn.
The mothers said that a child could be killed crossing the road if something wasn’t done about the speeding.
Mother Chris Harper said she put up signs near the Monbulk Road crossing last week telling drivers to slow down and that the speed limit outside Mt Evelyn Primary School was only 40 km/h.
For the past five years, the mothers have sat at the car park adjacent to the school waving and yelling at drivers to slow down.
“We are fed up. No one wants a fatality but that is going to happen if drivers don’t slow down.
“Everyone speeds through the crossing and we are concerned that a child will get hurt,” she said.
Crossing supervisors Andy Sneddon and Charlie Allchin said they are also concerned for the safety of the children.
Mr Allchin, who has been working as a crossing supervisor at Mt Evelyn for the past 12 years, said that traffic had not only increased but motorists were driving faster.
He said cars, buses, and vans speed through the school crossing, and when the police and council officers patrol the area, motorists slow down when they see the marked police car.
“As soon as the police leave, the drivers are back to normal – back to speeding,” he said.
Sergeant John Morgan, from the Yarra Ranges Traffic Management Unit (TMU), said that several concerned parents had notified police about the issue.
He said that the TMU would be targeting the area over the next few weeks, but that it was a difficult area to police.
“As soon as drivers see the police car they slow down, but we are going to take the unmarked car down there in the next couple of weeks,” he said.
Sgt Morgan said it was important to make drivers aware that they are running the risk of hitting a child if they speed through school crossings.
Shire of Yarra Ranges manager of community relations James Martin said there was little the shire could do about speeding motorists.
Mr Martin said the school has a designated 40km/h speed zone and flashing lights and that it is also manned by two crossing supervisors.
However, he said the council would investigate the crossing to see if there was room to set up the shire’s speed advisory trailer near the school.
“The trailer can be used to make drivers more aware of their speed.
“However, we need to ensure there is enough room to safely install the trailer beside the roads as we don’t want to inadvertently contribute to any traffic issues,” he said.