Why parents and children in Falkenstein choose the most dangerous route to school | free press

Elementary school students walk this route to school every morning in the city. You are crossing the busy main road at a point where there is no pedestrian protection. Parents and even teachers show their children how to do this. Police warn.

Falkenstein.

Two girls, two bags under their arms, rush across the dangerous “sidewalk”. “There are two teachers. They do it too,” says Andre Forster, referring to the women rushing toward the school. He’s trying to justify what he just did with his child, a second grader: crossing the main street in the same spot where there are no traffic lights, zebra crossings, or traffic islands. This is because the school is located across the street. The fastest and most convenient to reach parents, children and teachers. “People go straight from point A to B, and they’ve done that for hundreds of years of evolution. Because that’s the case, zebra crossing belongs here,” says the father.

Danny Klein of Falkenstein’s Regulatory Office says what seems too easy for parents and kids to draw a zebra crossing at the crossing, that’s not all. The desire for a safe crossing at this point was often expressed by the roundabout authority, which is responsible for the K 7830 road. It was always denied. Crossing a zebra only makes sense on a straight road that is easy to see. The main road makes a grille across the school. In addition, the third traffic calm cannot be justified, policeman Klein and policeman Rüdiger Riedel of Klein and Falkenstein point to pedestrian traffic lights above (a bend near Schlossfelsen) and below the school (kebab shop). However, they are rarely used by parents and children, as traffic cops found out on the first morning of school.

Eva’s mother says, “If I park here near the church, should I turn back to the traffic light?” Rüdiger Riedel indicates the bus stop, where parents can let the children out of the car – or into the car park at Sparkasse. But Büpo admits that construction is underway there and there are no vacancies.

The keyword is taxi. This method of bringing children is problematic because the “taxis” have caused traffic chaos. According to police spokesman Jean-Paul Lodek, this also limits children’s traffic awareness and independence to be able to fend for themselves.

Since there is a pedestrian traffic light every 150 metres, it doesn’t make sense to build an additional driveway directly opposite the school, says the district traffic office. The proposal to create a 30 km/h zone in front of the school also failed in front of the authorities. Due to the local situation, it is not possible to monitor compliance with the minimum speed, according to the logic. Instead, a “Attention, kids” tag was attached.

Traffic accidents occurred in front of schools and with children in the area in 2020/21 21 each – in 2019 48. The almost halving of accidents in the two Corona years can also be explained by the fact that schools were closed for a long time. time, Lüdtke admits. In 2021, schoolchildren caused 55 accidents as cyclists and 16 times as pedestrians. According to traffic statistics, 53 children, cyclists and pedestrians, were injured as a result of last year’s accident, 27 of whom were car passengers.

With the words “Do you want to cross the street here now?” Prevention police officer Ulrike Kämpf intercepts parents on the treacherous road to school. We are in a hurry today. Exceptionally. We always walk here, she answered, in front of the fathers, who seem reasonable, turn around and go to the pedestrian traffic light. On Tuesday, children and parents will cross the difficult road again.

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