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Help requested posted on 7th March 2017:

School Crossing Patrollers

Our local council has announced its intention to cease funding on some of the School Crossing Patrollers, specifically those that operate on pedestrian crossings. Can you point me to any research, articles that help prove there is a need to provide this resource, even on pedestrian crossings?

Keith Gambles

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Response posted on 8th March 2017 by:
Andrew Fraser

E: andrew.fraser@falkirk.gov.uk
T:

School Crossing Patrollers

https://travelwest.info/project/ee-125-effectiveness-school-crossing-patrols


Response posted on 8th March 2017 by:
Mark Gregory

E: mark.gregory@atkinsglobal.com
T:

School Crossing Patrollers

There does not appear to be anything in the SCP guidelines 2016 to indicate that providing SCP is a statutory duty. It does state that "...The Education and Inspection Act 2006 (section 508A) puts a duty on schools to promote sustainable travel to school. School Crossing Patrols are one option that can contribute to this duty..."

I would have thought that SCPs on controlled pedestrian crossings are needed less and I know of authorities where SCPs could not be found provided controlled crossings.

SCPs are one of the safest forms of crossings so perhaps a comparison or accident rates of SCP sites against those other facilities without SCPs might be a way forward.

It is worth checking to see whether Legislation had changed.


Response posted on 8th March 2017 by:
Paul McKenna

E: paul.mckenna@capita.co.uk
T:

School Crossing Patrollers

Hi, I did my dissertation on School Travel Plans and amongst the recommendations which mainly focussed on the importance of organisations such as Modeshift stars awarding bronze, silver and gold awards for schools, was a key recommendation for the review of School Crossing Patrols (staffing, payment, rollout...). Surveys with parents identified SCP as playing a major role in safely getting children to school. This is also linked to the importance of signalised crossings in and around schools. I'd be happy to send you a copy of my dissertation if it's any use.


Response posted on 8th March 2017 by:
Rae Callander

E: rae.callander@falkirk.gov.uk
T:

School Crossing Patrollers

We follow the guidelines issued by Road Safety GB which states: Having a SCP at a light controlled crossing (puffins, pelicans etc) are not a requirement as they are deemed safer crossing facilities and thus gives a duplication of resources. In our case the SCP's which operate our light controlled crossing points were in place prior to the light controlled point being established. It would therefore be the case that if our SCP's left these positions they would not be re-advertised.


Response posted on 8th March 2017 by:
Andy Swallowe

E: andy.swallowe@cambridgeshire.gov.uk
T: 07788 565502

School Crossing Patrollers

As others have said RSGB Guidance advises that SCPs operating on light controlled crossings can give conflicting messages to drivers and are also a duplication of resources. It does advise that an SCP can be left on a light controlled crossing if a business case supports this.

In these financially challenging times its a luxury to leave SCPs on light controlled crossings until they decide to leave and difficult to justify.

In January of this year we (Cambridgeshire) made our SCPs who worked on Pelican crossings redundant. Some of these Pelican crossings were sited on the main commuter routes into Cambridge and on the A10 however its worth noting that to date we have not receieved any complaints and very little negative publicity.


Response posted on 8th March 2017 by:
Richard Hall

E: richard.hall@northlincs.gov.uk
T:

School Crossing Patrollers

As previously stated the SCP guidelines say that SCPs should not operate on light controlled crossings as they fulfil the same purpose and are a duplication of resources. However they also state that in exceptional circumstance patrols pay be located at these crossings. Examples of exceptional circumstances are given as poor driver behaviour (such as red light running), large groups of children crossing or concerns about the children's age and ability to use the facility correctly.
Obviously it is up to each LA to decide on how to use this advice. A number of authorities in the recent SCP national survey say they have removed patrols from these crossings or will not replace the patrol should they leave.
Zebra crossings on the other hand do not have a stop order prior to pedestrians starting to cross and it is more a matter of judgement on when it is safe. Unaccompanied children may not be able to make those safe judgements and therefore the LA needs to take this into account when looking at removing patrols from this type of crossing.


Response posted on 8th March 2017 by:
Peter Wilson

E: Pwilson@westminster.gov.uk
T:

School Crossing Patrollers

In Westminster where a sight has been upgraded with a push button signal system we have through natural wastage, retirements, not replaced the SCP. We like most authorities use the guideline.
I would be interested to read the dissertation by Paul McKenna.


Response posted on 9th March 2017 by:
Mark Foweraker

E: m.foweraker@cardiff.gov.uk
T:

School Crossing Patrols

I would add the following observations related to the comments by others regarding having a SCP at signal crossings.
From experience in a previous role, where there is a SCP on a puffin crossing the drivers receive different messages about when they can go, the signal and the SCP. If the SCP leaves the crossing whilst the signal is still on red (as would happen with on crossing detection) drivers perceive it is "OK to go" and drive through a red signal. Alternatively if the SCP is still on the crossing when the green (or flashing amber on puffin crossings) some drivers will still go and be in conflict with the SCP who may be guiding additional pedestrians to cross against the "red man" signal. (This could be down to poor training or knowledge about pedestrian behaviour)

The one of main the cases where a SCP can be justified is where there is queuing through a crossing (typically on the exit side of a signal junction). In this case drivers in the junction may be unaware of the "green man" for pedestrians and clear the junction in conflict with pedestrians. However the SCP should only be considered as an interim measure until an engineering solution can be identified and implemented.


Response posted on 9th March 2017 by:
Derek C Donald

E: d.c.donald@btinternet.com
T: 01463792154

School Crossing Patrollers

There is no Statutory Requirement for an authority to provide a School Crossing Patrol Service.
The only Statutory requirement is regarding clothing if a School Crossing Patrol Service is provided, and this can be found in the Road Traffic Regulation Act Article 38, I think. If a patroller works on a crossing, they cannot stop the traffic when the vehicle light is at green, but may hold the traffic up when it changes back to green for sufficient time for the crossing to be cleared. This is from the discussions I was involved in whilst on a SCP Working Party with CRSOA , one of the fore runners of RSGB.


Response posted on 9th March 2017 by:
Mark Foweraker

E: m.foweraker@cardiff.gov.uk
T:

School Crossing Patrols

I would add the following observations related to the comments by others regarding having a SCP at signal crossings.
From experience in a previous role, where there is a SCP on a puffin crossing the drivers receive different messages about when they can go, the signal and the SCP. If the SCP leaves the crossing whilst the signal is still on red (as would happen with on crossing detection) drivers perceive it is "OK to go" and drive through a red signal. Alternatively if the SCP is still on the crossing when the green (or flashing amber on puffin crossings) some drivers will still go and be in conflict with the SCP who may be guiding additional pedestrians to cross against the "red man" signal. (This could be down to poor training or knowledge about pedestrian behaviour)

The one of main the cases where a SCP can be justified is where there is queuing through a crossing (typically on the exit side of a signal junction). In this case drivers in the junction may be unaware of the "green man" for pedestrians and clear the junction in conflict with pedestrians. However the SCP should only be considered as an interim measure until an engineering solution can be identified and implemented.


Response posted on 23rd March 2017 by:
Patrick Lingwood

E: patrick.lingwood@bedford.gov.uk
T:

School Crossing Patrollers

Just to add another perspective, not to discount the benefits of Zebras to children's journeys in the right location. We have just analysed the 2016 data for the heavily trafficked roundabout (34,000 vehicles per day) in Bedford which we converted to a turbo-roundabout with new Zebras on each arm. The roundabout is on key routes to several schools.

Since the changes 2 years ago, the numbers of adult and child pedestrians crossing at the arms have increased from 2128 to 2561 for adults (20% increase) and 228 to 487 for children (113% increase). We know from the timing that most of these children's journeys are on the way to/from school. In terms of crossings, there is a morning peak between 8am 9am of over 350 adult pedestrians, 150 child pedestrians, 30 adult cyclists and 30 child cyclists. The next and highest peak is between 3-4pm, with nearly 500 adults and over 200 child pedestrians crossing along with 15 child cyclists and 30 adult cyclists.

From observation, the primary school children are with adults and the secondary children in groups with each other. There have been no child casualties.


Response posted on 31st March 2017 by:
Roly Hermans

E: roland.hermans@police.govt.nz
T:

School Crossing Patrollers

For your interest, New Zealand has had school patrols operated by students (rather than adults) since the 1930s. In that time, there has only been one death on a school patrolled crossing.

The New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) has an online manual for school patrols (known in NZ as 'School Traffic Safety Teams') on its education portal: https://education.nzta.govt.nz/resources/policy-and-practices/school-traffic-safety-teams


Response posted on 31st March 2017 by:
Roly Hermans

E: roland.hermans@police.govt.nz
T:

School Crossing Patrollers

For your interest, New Zealand has had school patrols operated by students (rather than adults) since the 1930s. In that time, there has only been one death on a school patrolled crossing.

The New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) has an online manual for school patrols (known in NZ as 'School Traffic Safety Teams') on its education portal: https://education.nzta.govt.nz/resources/policy-and-practices/school-traffic-safety-teams


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