South Oxhey crash, which injured two 10-year-old girls, 'was just an accident waiting to happen', say residents

Watford Observer: South Oxhey crash 'was just an accident waiting to happen' South Oxhey crash 'was just an accident waiting to happen'

A South Oxhey doctor rushed to the aid of two schoolgirls who lay injured in a road following a serious car accident in South Oxhey after school on Tuesday.

Witnesses described how Dr Hussain treated and comforted the two 10-year-olds from Greenfields Primary School as they waited for an ambulance.

Passersby also joined in efforts to help the girls who were hurt at the pedestrian crossing in Prestwick Road by the Meng Zan Express Chinese restaurant.

Jane Wildes was working at Prestwick Chemist, metres from the crossing, at the time of the accident.

Location of the incident

Ms Wildes said: "There were about 30 or 40 people gathering round the girls trying to help them after the accident.

"We were running around like headless chickens trying to get blankets and help in any way that we could."

Ms Wildes said Dr Hussain, from the nearby Prestwick Road Surgery, sat with one of the girls, who had sustained injuries to her face, and kept her talking and conscious until the ambulance arrived.

Jack Patel, who works at Premier newsagents, added: "The doctor was the first one to tend to the girls. They were lucky it happened outside the surgery."

The girls were later treated by paramedics and taken to Watford General Hospital.

The scene was cordoned off until 6.15pm as police carried out an investigation.

Previously there have been problems with the speed of traffic in the road and, though it is not clear if speed was an issue in this incident, residents, teachers and shop owners are calling for "something to be done" about the control of traffic along Prestwick Road.

Mr Patel said he often hears cars "screeching" in an attempt to stop when they approach the pedestrian crossing.

He said: "This was going to happen. I have heard cars’ brakes screeching to a halt at that pedestrian crossing and others just don’t try to stop.

"You need speed cameras up here. It’s a joke the speed that some cars go up this road and something needs to be done."

Tina Meredith, spokesman for Greenfields Primary School, said concerns had been raised about the crossing before the accident.

Ms Meredith said: "I was on the phone to the council this morning and that crossing was just an accident waiting to happen.

"We want something to be done about the speed camera and crossing. We’re concerned about the wellbeing of our children and we want something to be done about it.

"The speed camera should be as you come down the hill so people know when you come round the corner to slow down before you get to the shops."

Simon Hoggett, Hertfordshire County Council’s spokesman, said: "We wish the children involved in the accident a full and speedy recovery. We await the outcome of the police investigation and will carefully consider any resulting recommendations.

"If residents have concerns about speeding traffic on this road they should discuss these with the police and contact their local county councillor to explore the possibility of a traffic study or traffic calming measures.

"There hasn't been a school crossing patrol at this site on Prestwick Road since 2010. At that time the site did not meet the criteria for a patrol, which is based on the number of people crossing at a site and traffic volumes.

"The site was reassessed in January this year and still falls well short of the criteria which is already lower in Hertfordshire than the recommended national level. That being said, at the time of the accident a school crossing patrol would not have been on duty."

Comments (11)

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5:57pm Wed 5 Feb 14

gloryhornet4 says...

Can we not focus on school children and look at that it is all pedestrians who are vulnerable at these crossings.

If you map out the deaths of pedestrians cyclists and all others over a 10 year period in more or less any area UK town it is frightening how we take road deaths as one of those things.

As a quick fix can we stop talking of speed cams as money making and bring the conversation to an adult level and accept they are there to save lives.

We may have to await a fatality to get a speed cam there, but if we all write to our councillors and ask for traffic calming measures, it is a start.

At this point a year ago snow started to settle quickly and the surface even with 4 new tyres on my car was not good. I had an ar5e on my bumper sounding his horn for me slowing to 27 MPH.

The police spokesman was more interested in managing budgets and whilst knee jerk reaction is not the way to proceed - let's sort it out. Every road death costs £1m. There is your budget for road safety Mr Policeman.
Can we not focus on school children and look at that it is all pedestrians who are vulnerable at these crossings. If you map out the deaths of pedestrians cyclists and all others over a 10 year period in more or less any area UK town it is frightening how we take road deaths as one of those things. As a quick fix can we stop talking of speed cams as money making and bring the conversation to an adult level and accept they are there to save lives. We may have to await a fatality to get a speed cam there, but if we all write to our councillors and ask for traffic calming measures, it is a start. At this point a year ago snow started to settle quickly and the surface even with 4 new tyres on my car was not good. I had an ar5e on my bumper sounding his horn for me slowing to 27 MPH. The police spokesman was more interested in managing budgets and whilst knee jerk reaction is not the way to proceed - let's sort it out. Every road death costs £1m. There is your budget for road safety Mr Policeman. gloryhornet4
  • Score: 3

8:37am Thu 6 Feb 14

t-angel says...

i think we need to put lights there,this should never happen again the council should put peoples safety first.
i think we need to put lights there,this should never happen again the council should put peoples safety first. t-angel
  • Score: 8

9:57am Thu 6 Feb 14

UKBEARS says...

Bear in mind also that pedestrians have a duty to be aware of what is around when crossing. I am not saying that this was the case with this particular incident, but frequently school children are so intent on using their mobile phones to communicate with friends at the same time as chatting to those with them, that they are totally unaware of anything that is going on around them and often wander across zebra crossings (or even just across a road) with no notion of any possible hazards - or indeed of other pedestrians!
Bear in mind also that pedestrians have a duty to be aware of what is around when crossing. I am not saying that this was the case with this particular incident, but frequently school children are so intent on using their mobile phones to communicate with friends at the same time as chatting to those with them, that they are totally unaware of anything that is going on around them and often wander across zebra crossings (or even just across a road) with no notion of any possible hazards - or indeed of other pedestrians! UKBEARS
  • Score: -2

11:06am Thu 6 Feb 14

Hairy Hornet says...

gloryhornet4 wrote:
Can we not focus on school children and look at that it is all pedestrians who are vulnerable at these crossings.

If you map out the deaths of pedestrians cyclists and all others over a 10 year period in more or less any area UK town it is frightening how we take road deaths as one of those things.

As a quick fix can we stop talking of speed cams as money making and bring the conversation to an adult level and accept they are there to save lives.

We may have to await a fatality to get a speed cam there, but if we all write to our councillors and ask for traffic calming measures, it is a start.

At this point a year ago snow started to settle quickly and the surface even with 4 new tyres on my car was not good. I had an ar5e on my bumper sounding his horn for me slowing to 27 MPH.

The police spokesman was more interested in managing budgets and whilst knee jerk reaction is not the way to proceed - let's sort it out. Every road death costs £1m. There is your budget for road safety Mr Policeman.
Well said. As a motorist you should drive defensivley, particularly highly pedestrianised areas and expect the unexpected. Approach crossings, lights etc anticipating change and adjust your speed accordingly.

Accidents involving all people irrespective of age, 9 or 90 are tragedies. They all mean something to someone.
[quote][p][bold]gloryhornet4[/bold] wrote: Can we not focus on school children and look at that it is all pedestrians who are vulnerable at these crossings. If you map out the deaths of pedestrians cyclists and all others over a 10 year period in more or less any area UK town it is frightening how we take road deaths as one of those things. As a quick fix can we stop talking of speed cams as money making and bring the conversation to an adult level and accept they are there to save lives. We may have to await a fatality to get a speed cam there, but if we all write to our councillors and ask for traffic calming measures, it is a start. At this point a year ago snow started to settle quickly and the surface even with 4 new tyres on my car was not good. I had an ar5e on my bumper sounding his horn for me slowing to 27 MPH. The police spokesman was more interested in managing budgets and whilst knee jerk reaction is not the way to proceed - let's sort it out. Every road death costs £1m. There is your budget for road safety Mr Policeman.[/p][/quote]Well said. As a motorist you should drive defensivley, particularly highly pedestrianised areas and expect the unexpected. Approach crossings, lights etc anticipating change and adjust your speed accordingly. Accidents involving all people irrespective of age, 9 or 90 are tragedies. They all mean something to someone. Hairy Hornet
  • Score: 7

11:24am Thu 6 Feb 14

abbotshornet says...

UKBEARS wrote:
Bear in mind also that pedestrians have a duty to be aware of what is around when crossing. I am not saying that this was the case with this particular incident, but frequently school children are so intent on using their mobile phones to communicate with friends at the same time as chatting to those with them, that they are totally unaware of anything that is going on around them and often wander across zebra crossings (or even just across a road) with no notion of any possible hazards - or indeed of other pedestrians!
CHILDREN
[quote][p][bold]UKBEARS[/bold] wrote: Bear in mind also that pedestrians have a duty to be aware of what is around when crossing. I am not saying that this was the case with this particular incident, but frequently school children are so intent on using their mobile phones to communicate with friends at the same time as chatting to those with them, that they are totally unaware of anything that is going on around them and often wander across zebra crossings (or even just across a road) with no notion of any possible hazards - or indeed of other pedestrians![/p][/quote]CHILDREN abbotshornet
  • Score: -3

4:15pm Thu 6 Feb 14

EU_OUT_NOW says...

Alarmingly, pedestrians over the years have evolved into a new breed of death wish people. It's become quite normal these days for those using crossings to just walk out, not even looking to see if traffic is going to stop, just assuming that it will. Mobile phones in use whilst crossing and deep in conversation with friends is also now the norm. Now..... my instinct for self preservation is so inbuilt that I wait at the crossing until I am sure that the driver and I have made eye contact before I cross, even if the cross lights are GREEN. There is no way on earth I am going to take risks with a one Ton car without thoroughly checking to make sure it's stopped and it is safe to cross. As a parent and grandparent my heart goes out to these two children and I sincerely hope they make a full recovery.
Alarmingly, pedestrians over the years have evolved into a new breed of death wish people. It's become quite normal these days for those using crossings to just walk out, not even looking to see if traffic is going to stop, just assuming that it will. Mobile phones in use whilst crossing and deep in conversation with friends is also now the norm. Now..... my instinct for self preservation is so inbuilt that I wait at the crossing until I am sure that the driver and I have made eye contact before I cross, even if the cross lights are GREEN. There is no way on earth I am going to take risks with a one Ton car without thoroughly checking to make sure it's stopped and it is safe to cross. As a parent and grandparent my heart goes out to these two children and I sincerely hope they make a full recovery. EU_OUT_NOW
  • Score: -4

6:30pm Thu 6 Feb 14

Be Nice says...

UKBEARS wrote:
Bear in mind also that pedestrians have a duty to be aware of what is around when crossing. I am not saying that this was the case with this particular incident, but frequently school children are so intent on using their mobile phones to communicate with friends at the same time as chatting to those with them, that they are totally unaware of anything that is going on around them and often wander across zebra crossings (or even just across a road) with no notion of any possible hazards - or indeed of other pedestrians!
These girls were not at fault, another car had stopped and they were almost across the road, there were many witnesses. I wish them a speedy recovery.
[quote][p][bold]UKBEARS[/bold] wrote: Bear in mind also that pedestrians have a duty to be aware of what is around when crossing. I am not saying that this was the case with this particular incident, but frequently school children are so intent on using their mobile phones to communicate with friends at the same time as chatting to those with them, that they are totally unaware of anything that is going on around them and often wander across zebra crossings (or even just across a road) with no notion of any possible hazards - or indeed of other pedestrians![/p][/quote]These girls were not at fault, another car had stopped and they were almost across the road, there were many witnesses. I wish them a speedy recovery. Be Nice
  • Score: 1

6:37pm Thu 6 Feb 14

afc1971 says...

Firstly, as the mother of one of the girls involved in this accident, I would like to send out my heartfelt gratitude to those people who helped out at the scene, the emergency services and the medical staff who have treated our girls, I can speak for both sets of parents we really can not thank you enough. Secondly, the support we have received from friends, family and members of the community, many of those we have never met before has been so lovely it really has touched me. I have sat here a read the above comments and feel the need to put a couple of people who seem to have pre conceived ideas of school children right. Neither of the two girls involved in this accident had mobile phones on them, in fact they don't own one!!!, they were crossing correctly as they have been taught to, the witnesses all back this up and the accident was caused by the driver of the vehicle pressing the accelerator and not the brake, so actually sped up towards them. It has really angered, hurt and upset both sets of parents to see these comments assuming our girls were maybe to blame!!! We feel extremely lucky to have them both still with us and are looking to the future on the road to recovery.
Firstly, as the mother of one of the girls involved in this accident, I would like to send out my heartfelt gratitude to those people who helped out at the scene, the emergency services and the medical staff who have treated our girls, I can speak for both sets of parents we really can not thank you enough. Secondly, the support we have received from friends, family and members of the community, many of those we have never met before has been so lovely it really has touched me. I have sat here a read the above comments and feel the need to put a couple of people who seem to have pre conceived ideas of school children right. Neither of the two girls involved in this accident had mobile phones on them, in fact they don't own one!!!, they were crossing correctly as they have been taught to, the witnesses all back this up and the accident was caused by the driver of the vehicle pressing the accelerator and not the brake, so actually sped up towards them. It has really angered, hurt and upset both sets of parents to see these comments assuming our girls were maybe to blame!!! We feel extremely lucky to have them both still with us and are looking to the future on the road to recovery. afc1971
  • Score: 16

9:01pm Fri 7 Feb 14

RobBob says...

I agree the speed camera at this site is in the wrong place. However as a motorist that drives over this crossing twice a day, I would say the main problem is the site lines. Because of parked cars and the railings around the crossing it is not possible to see the pedestrians until you are on the crossing. Even at 30 miles per hour this crossing is dangerous.
Lights would be safer option unless the zebra crossing is redesigned.
I agree the speed camera at this site is in the wrong place. However as a motorist that drives over this crossing twice a day, I would say the main problem is the site lines. Because of parked cars and the railings around the crossing it is not possible to see the pedestrians until you are on the crossing. Even at 30 miles per hour this crossing is dangerous. Lights would be safer option unless the zebra crossing is redesigned. RobBob
  • Score: 2

12:05am Sat 8 Feb 14

A.H.1.8 says...

UKBEARS wrote:
Bear in mind also that pedestrians have a duty to be aware of what is around when crossing. I am not saying that this was the case with this particular incident, but frequently school children are so intent on using their mobile phones to communicate with friends at the same time as chatting to those with them, that they are totally unaware of anything that is going on around them and often wander across zebra crossings (or even just across a road) with no notion of any possible hazards - or indeed of other pedestrians!
Sorry but the girls weren't to blame the women was so don't go around stereotyping say kids on there phones they don't even have phones so I we don't need to write negitive comments we have witness the girls crossed perfectly fine the silly women didn't break so point proven
[quote][p][bold]UKBEARS[/bold] wrote: Bear in mind also that pedestrians have a duty to be aware of what is around when crossing. I am not saying that this was the case with this particular incident, but frequently school children are so intent on using their mobile phones to communicate with friends at the same time as chatting to those with them, that they are totally unaware of anything that is going on around them and often wander across zebra crossings (or even just across a road) with no notion of any possible hazards - or indeed of other pedestrians![/p][/quote]Sorry but the girls weren't to blame the women was so don't go around stereotyping say kids on there phones they don't even have phones so I we don't need to write negitive comments we have witness the girls crossed perfectly fine the silly women didn't break so point proven A.H.1.8
  • Score: 0

10:15am Sat 8 Feb 14

gloryhornet4 says...

afc1971 wrote:
Firstly, as the mother of one of the girls involved in this accident, I would like to send out my heartfelt gratitude to those people who helped out at the scene, the emergency services and the medical staff who have treated our girls, I can speak for both sets of parents we really can not thank you enough. Secondly, the support we have received from friends, family and members of the community, many of those we have never met before has been so lovely it really has touched me. I have sat here a read the above comments and feel the need to put a couple of people who seem to have pre conceived ideas of school children right. Neither of the two girls involved in this accident had mobile phones on them, in fact they don't own one!!!, they were crossing correctly as they have been taught to, the witnesses all back this up and the accident was caused by the driver of the vehicle pressing the accelerator and not the brake, so actually sped up towards them. It has really angered, hurt and upset both sets of parents to see these comments assuming our girls were maybe to blame!!! We feel extremely lucky to have them both still with us and are looking to the future on the road to recovery.
I am in full support.

As to comments about mobile phones - you take pedestrians as you find them. It is incumbent upon drivers to anticipate danger as otherwise the consequences are too severe for children the elderly and those who do not pay attention. That is the Highway Code.

No mobile phones relevant here anyway.

Wishing the girls a full and quick recovery.
[quote][p][bold]afc1971[/bold] wrote: Firstly, as the mother of one of the girls involved in this accident, I would like to send out my heartfelt gratitude to those people who helped out at the scene, the emergency services and the medical staff who have treated our girls, I can speak for both sets of parents we really can not thank you enough. Secondly, the support we have received from friends, family and members of the community, many of those we have never met before has been so lovely it really has touched me. I have sat here a read the above comments and feel the need to put a couple of people who seem to have pre conceived ideas of school children right. Neither of the two girls involved in this accident had mobile phones on them, in fact they don't own one!!!, they were crossing correctly as they have been taught to, the witnesses all back this up and the accident was caused by the driver of the vehicle pressing the accelerator and not the brake, so actually sped up towards them. It has really angered, hurt and upset both sets of parents to see these comments assuming our girls were maybe to blame!!! We feel extremely lucky to have them both still with us and are looking to the future on the road to recovery.[/p][/quote]I am in full support. As to comments about mobile phones - you take pedestrians as you find them. It is incumbent upon drivers to anticipate danger as otherwise the consequences are too severe for children the elderly and those who do not pay attention. That is the Highway Code. No mobile phones relevant here anyway. Wishing the girls a full and quick recovery. gloryhornet4
  • Score: 1

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