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Accident by waitrose today

On 1 Feb 2014 at 3:37pm Lewesperson wrote:
Does anyone know if the person injured on the road by waitrose/Eastgate church is ok? We passed by just after it happened this afternoon and told a paramedic who ran up there, looked like the person was hit by a car. Really hope they are ok.
On 2 Feb 2014 at 8:20am bastian wrote:
I didn't know that had happened thought it is not a generalisation to say that cars don't slow down there or stop at the traffic lights when thet are red either so I am not suprised, and with the new temporary lights in place round the corner there is alot of confusion as to where to stop, the signs have blown down in the wind. I hope they are alright.
On 2 Feb 2014 at 8:58am Annette Curtin-Twitcher wrote:
I think they should put a zebra crossing outside Waitrose so people can cross to the bus station safely. I know it would slow down traffic on that stretch, but that's better than people getting knocked over. To reduce the number of cars passing that point, they could put a mini roundabout at the junction where cars leave the Waitrose car park, so people could turn right rather than go all the way round the block.
I must say, I've never seen a driver jump the red lights there. I've seen 3 accidents near Waitrose/the Volly, and they've all been a combination of drivers and pedestrians not being careful enough.
On 2 Feb 2014 at 9:09am bastian wrote:
believe me, jumping red lights on the triangle at the crossing to Malling is a common event, it is used by kids all the time to go to ans from school and it is happening more since they put in the temporary ones as it is unclear where to stop.
The speed of traffic is also an issue, when did you ever see someone drive at 20mph coming in to town or throguh town around that junction.
On 2 Feb 2014 at 12:10pm xplorer1 wrote:
As art of the Santon proposal for the North St area, the whole road layout between the river bridge and East St will be changed significantly, one way or another. It would be a poor use of money to plan and effect any changes to the current layout before that happens.
On 2 Feb 2014 at 1:17pm bastian wrote:
True enough, but their plans are really flakey, I went to look at them and they throw up all amnnor of problems all over town and they make no space for the use of the existing road as a seconry road if the A27 has to close around Lewes.
On 2 Feb 2014 at 5:02pm Market Street Resident wrote:
Crumbs! Hope all is well!
This is no surprise at all, though. The only time anyone seems to obey the 20mph limit is when it's congested. I know 20 seems slow if you're driving but Lewes has a lot of narrow streets, weird junctions and loads of people milling around.
The buses are probably some of the worst offenders. I know they are doing way more than 20 when they come thundering past my abode. Imagine being hit by one of those...
On 2 Feb 2014 at 6:47pm Stan the Van wrote:
It always amazes me that more pedestrians aren't injured, they walk in the same direction as the traffic, with their backs to it and then without turning round to look, simply step into the road. The pavements are narrow, but so is the road and they can easily be walloped by a wing mirror, or worse. No awareness at all.
On 2 Feb 2014 at 9:09pm lewes resident wrote:
there are traffic lights by boots don't need a zebra crossing for the bus station. literally takes an extra few seconds to walk to the traffic lights
On 2 Feb 2014 at 11:26pm GhostBike wrote:
Really? And how many seconds would cars lose by just... slowing... down a little and being more respectful to pedestrians?
On 3 Feb 2014 at 7:59am Southover Queen wrote:
This is a perennial argument. If there were no need for a crossing between Waitrose and the bus station then there wouldn't be constant examples of people dodging the (often speeding) traffic to get between them. Very often it's the elderly and infirm taking their lives in their hands because, I suspect, what seems like "just a few seconds" to some is a considerable and painful hike for them. If your bus is waiting at the stop then the temptation is going to be overwhelming. It isn't helped by the fact that the road bends at the approach from the bridge so that the fast moving traffic can't see that there's an old lady tottering across (although sometimes I wonder if they'd moderate their behaviour even if they did have prior warning). It could be years before the Santon proposals see light of day, and I feel quite strongly that the layout needs addressing sooner rather than later.

But then the provision of safe crossings throughout Lewes is really poor - I've taken to stopping for pedestrians wanting to cross at the junction of Market St and Whitehill, because the traffic is unrelenting (and fast) during the day. It's not helped by the often appalling state of the pavements - ever wondered why everyone walks in the road on Rotten Row?
On 3 Feb 2014 at 8:00am ducatipete wrote:
Probably sending a text message while crossing the road.
On 3 Feb 2014 at 8:52am lewes resident wrote:
if there was a zebra crossing outside Waitrose the traffic jams would cause chaos around the one way system. just not practical, the pedestrians would then get knocked over by a cyclist , they never take any notice of red lights , crossings etc.
On 3 Feb 2014 at 10:36am Southover Queen wrote:
Agreed, Lewes resident, a zebra crossing is not practical. But a zebra crossing isn't the only choice, is it? Is it really beyond the wit of man to think of rejigging the vehicle vs pedestrian layout in that area which allows an old person to catch their bus without risking being mown down by cars? Is it??? (And please leave the silly comments about cycles out of it)

On 3 Feb 2014 at 10:59am Townscape wrote:
The ultimate problem is that roads, pavements and traffic controls in Lewes - as in most British towns - are designed with one goal in mind: maintaining traffic flow. Pedestrians' needs are a distant second. And you can see the assumptions in the posters here: that the convenience and safety of pedestrians is less important than preventing cars from having to stop, queue or wait. You can see it in the lack of crossings and the narrowness of so many pavements (awful for young families in particular) - which means that a narrow medieval town built for people is dominated by traffic.
I would love to get a good urban designer - say someone like Jan Gehl - to take a look at Lewes and think about how to make it more pedestrian-friendly. On most of the continent, of course, they think about how to make cities and towns pleasant for those pedestrians, and then think secondly about how cars can be accommodated within that.
On 3 Feb 2014 at 11:31am King Stone wrote:
Unfortunately we have completely inept planners/highway officers who do not work together (different Councils) and have poor regard for the impact developments have on traffic parking and pedestrians. One of the crossings near Waitrose isn't even complete (after over 20years). The 20MPH zone was a good idea (not initiated by planners) but is pointless if no one is going to regulate it. When I drive down Market St it is like a roller coaster ride and I am absolutely astonished that the residents there are putting up with it. The road has clearly collapsed each side and you can see (and hear) holes, wobbly drain covers and massive dips in the surface. It used to be flat!
On 3 Feb 2014 at 1:46pm lewes resident wrote:
not a silly comment regarding cyclists actually, it is a fact
On 3 Feb 2014 at 2:01pm pedestrian wrote:
I am disturbed to hear that cyclists have knocked over pedestrians in lewes. When has this happened?
On 3 Feb 2014 at 2:26pm lewes resident wrote:
it happened to an old lady a couple of years ago crossing at traffic lights near the prison
On 3 Feb 2014 at 2:42pm Southover Queen wrote:
Silly because it's completely irrelevant to the discussion. Two years ago? At the prison? We're talking about Saturday outside Waitrose where there is very obviously a recurrent problem - a problem which has nothing to do with a random accident and a badly behaved cyclist and everything to do with traffic management. As Townscape correctly identifies there is an appalling attitude towards pedestrians in this town exemplified by many of the respondents on this thread.
On 3 Feb 2014 at 3:19pm Badger wrote:
SQ I agree with Lewes Resident I'm afraid. The mention of poorly behaved cyclists is relevant to the discussion. Cyclists, motor vehicles and pedestrians all need to be considered, and the fact that some cyclists DO ignore laws is completely relevant to the discussion of making that part of Lewes safe for everybody, regardless of the fact that the only precise example LR can give is from a couple of years ago.
Why is it not relevant that cyclists have been known to ignore zebra crossings and hit pedestrians? Someone mentioned zebra crossings and LR brought up a possible problem with that 'solution'.
I'd also bring up the fact that, because of the curve in the road, pedestrians shouldn't be encouraged to cross there anyway, no matter how tempting, because a driver or cyclist not paying attention (which no one can deny happens even if it shouldn't) might not realise the crossing is there until it's too late to stop.
On 3 Feb 2014 at 4:03pm Southover Queen wrote:
It's not relevant because badly behaved cycles are not the problem. Actually badly behaved vehicles of any variety are not the problem, because the problem is the layout of the road and the complete failure to account for human nature. If vehicles - cycles, motorbikes, cars, vans, lorries or UFOs - come through the junction as it currently functions, obeying the rules as dictated by the traffic system, then they're quite likely to run over an elderly person lugging their shopping over to the bus stop from the shops. That person does not want to walk five times as far to abide by rules which are conceived without any consideration for them, so they disobey them. It doesn't matter, actually, whether they're being lazy or stupid or just plain suicidal, the fact is that they do it and they'll go on doing it and one of these days someone's dear great-grannie is going to get killed. That will be a tragedy for their family and actually a tragedy for the driver who kills her, and it will be because the junction as it is doesn't work.

I should add that I wouldn't dream of crossing at that point: it's absurdly dangerous. And what you say about visibility is right, but actually that's a traffic management problem too - if drivers aren't going to abide by the speed limit (and actually the highway code about stopping distances) then something needs to be done to force them too, when the alternative is injury or death. Or you put up barriers right the way along that stretch to prevent anyone from crossing, because otherwise they'll just go on doing it.
On 3 Feb 2014 at 4:29pm Pedestrian wrote:
So 'they' is actually one, very unusual accident on the other side of town. Oh dear, I have been a victim of exaggeration. Am a bit annoyed.
On 4 Feb 2014 at 9:26am ar10642 wrote:
SQ is absolutely right. Crossings should be where people want to cross, because if they're not they'll just do it anyway.
On 4 Feb 2014 at 12:32pm Nevill King wrote:
Here we go again.
Firstly, whatever anyone above might say, the accident at the weekend was NOT outside Waitrose. It was on the corner by the church, with clear visibility back up Little East Street, and with only one lane of traffic to negotiate. I know this because I saw it. It is, however, being blamed on the road layout causing a lack of visibility. SQ says that we need a crossing place outside Waitrose, a place where she goes on to say 'I wouldn't dream of crossing at that point: it's absurdly dangerous', and goes on to agree that the visibility is equally poor.
So, you put a crossing there and in doing so encourage everyone to use it, except that the visibility is so bad that oncoming traffic doesn't see it. It really is not rocket science to work out what would happen next!
On 4 Feb 2014 at 1:34pm Southover Queen wrote:
Hmmm. It presumably is rocket science then to infer that I'm talking about the junction as it currently laid out when I say that I wouldn't cross at that point. If the management of traffic at the whole junction were rebalanced so that it was safe to cross, then I very well might do so, yes.

Thank you also for your clarification about exactly where Saturday's accident happened. It sounds as if that's where there is - quite inexplicably - no safe crossing between the traffic island and the traffic light controlled crossing to Waterloo Place.

I wasn't blaming that specific accident on a lack of visibility (not least because I didn't know the details) but commenting on the general layout. It doesn't really undermine the wider point that the whole junction is dangerous, although I fully agree that the frequent excursions by pedestrians across the area between Waitrose and the bus station are far more dangerous. And any sensible review of pedestrian crossings in that area would consider providing a safe way of getting to East Street too...
On 4 Feb 2014 at 2:41pm Hmmm... wrote:
That's five posts by Southover Queen on this subject. Is this a record?
On 4 Feb 2014 at 2:52pm Steve wrote:
Iíve also noticed that the delay between pressing the button at the two sets of lights between the bottom of Little East Street and Waitrose and the lights changing has increased quite a bit since some work was done to them a few months ago. They used to change instantly, now thereís a significant delay and it takes ages to get through both sets. Iím sure this will encourage people to take risks and nip over the road before they change
On 4 Feb 2014 at 2:55pm Local resident wrote:
who cares? , no one is counting.
so, back to the serious subject of pedestrian accidents
Was the accident on the part of the 3 way island crossing that is missing (between the island and Little East st) or the temporary crossing between the island and Waterloo place?
On 4 Feb 2014 at 2:57pm Harald wrote:
If people keep posting views that differ from hers, she'll keep on responding until she has the last word. That's her M.O. unfortunately.
On 4 Feb 2014 at 5:26pm Nevill King wrote:
@ SQ - The point I was making is that the accident happened at a point where there IS good visibility, and only one lane of traffic. Any proposed crossing outside Waitrose would be in a position where there are two lanes of traffic and NOT good visibility. The potential for accidents would therefore be much higher.
@ Local Resident - It was on the road between the Church and the 3-way island.
On 4 Feb 2014 at 8:38pm prufrock wrote:
Thankfully this will be a thing of the past when the Santon plans come into being. It may be one or two years but there is no prospect of any change given these plans. They are hardly 'flaky'; the suggestions for 'shared space' are becoming commonplace urban design in much of Europe.

Check it out here »
On 4 Feb 2014 at 9:13pm Southover Queen wrote:
Gosh: MO? It makes me sound like a master criminal. I wouldn't say that was true either: I just don't like people misrepresenting me. And I think it's helpful to debate local issues without flaming wars and ad hominem attacks on a local internet forum.

Nevill King: I agree. I'm not suggesting just plonking a crossing down there, but I do think there are ways of rejigging that junction so that pedestrians and vehicles can co-exist.

Prufrock, I can't really see what they're proposing exactly for the junction, but I like the sound of "shared space". A lot.
On 5 Feb 2014 at 9:17am stevet wrote:
All the ideas on those plans look great

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