An extra safety boost for local school zones

Member for Cootamundra Katrina Hodgkinson has welcomed a $5 million program to install additional school zone flashing lights at schools, including at Young Public School, Hennessy Catholic College, Young High School and Young North Public School.

The funding is for schools with multiple entrances and greater road safety risks.

Young North Public School principal, Kel Smerdon, has also welcomed the funding for the new flashing lights.

Mr Smerdon said he welcomed any initiative that helped to improve safety in and around schools in Young.

He said he had not been notified when the new lights would be installed.

The school already has one set of flashing lights.

Ms Hodgkinson said an additional eight sets of flashing lights will be installed at schools throughout the Cootamundra electorate to improve road safety for families travelling to and from school.

Extra lights will also be installed at Cowra Public School, Coolamon Central School, Cootamundra Public School and Temora High School.

“This will build on the NSW Government’s initial rollout which ensured all eligible schools across NSW had at least one set of flashing lights,” Ms Hodgkinson said.

“Children are some of our most vulnerable road users, and we know school zone flashing lights are an effective way of warning drivers to slow down to improve the safety of our kids.”

The new locations for school zone flashing lights were selected by a risk assessment model which takes into account a number of factors including approach speed, pedestrian numbers, traffic volumes, and heavy vehicle traffic volumes.

All eligible schools with multiple busy entrances were consulted in the process of selecting school zones for this program.

Flashing lights are funded through the Community Road Safety Fund, where all speed and red light camera fines go directly towards vital road safety programs.

School zones are enforced on government gazetted school days to ensure operation dates and times are consistent and easy to follow.

The new lights are extra to the safety milestone reached earlier tis year when the State Government completed installation of more than 2,400 school zone flashing lights which had been installed since 2011 meaning every eligible school in NSW is now covered - including those in Cootamundra electorate.

At least one set of flashing lights were already installed at each school in Young before last week’s announcement.

Crews had spent the 18 months to December 2015 rolling out flashing lights for every identified school.

LIGHTS WELCOME: Young North Public School principal, Kel Smerdon, says the school welcomes any initiative that improves safety of the students.

LIGHTS WELCOME: Young North Public School principal, Kel Smerdon, says the school welcomes any initiative that improves safety of the students.

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