A DESPERATE plea was made today by a Huddersfield safety campaigner.
“Build the pedestrian crossing before someone dies.”
The appeal came from roads campaigner Yvonne Hutchinson, of Brackenhall.
Miss Hutchinson has blasted Kirklees Council for more delays in providing a pedestrian crossing opposite Asda on the busy Bradford Road at Sheepridge.
Miss Hutchinson, a regeneration consultant from Brackenhall, says the council have repeatedly stalled on the decision for almost three years, even though funding of £100,000 was agreed 16 months ago.
Miss Hutchinson, 43, says she has seen many near misses including an incident where an elderly shopper was nearly hit by a vehicle.
The mother-of-one said: “The council called me yesterday and said that the crossing isn’t likely to be installed now until next year. It’s absolutely outrageous.
“Every time I manage to speak to them, the crossing is still at least six months away. They seem to be trying to string this thing out until someone gets killed. And almost every week I see some very near misses.
“In the latest incident, I saw an elderly woman attempting to cross the road near the supermarket and cars stopping abruptly to allow her to cross. The woman was shaken and fortunate to have escaped with her life.
“It is a disgrace that local government bureaucracy and politics casually continues to put local people’s lives at risk with such scant regard for the safety of citizens. Worse still, this attitude towards the safety of local people sharply conflicts with the Highway Department’s own stated objectives of accident reduction, community safety and customer involvement.”
A spokesman for Kirklees Council said: “After the need for a crossing was identified and agreed we added it to the list in a priority order. We informed Miss Hutchinson the crossing was scheduled to be installed during this council year up to March, 2009, and this is still the intention.
“We are required legally to advertise the crossing for a four-week period, which is due to take place late September.
“If there are no objections to the crossing, plans are to start the work in January/February, 2009.”