Belfast Telegraph

New road crossing demand after two die at Belfast blackspot

By Amanda Poole

Residents will stage a protest on Saturday in a Belfast suburb where two pedestrians were killed in recent months trying to cross a busy road.

People living in the Crumlin Road area say they want a crossing moved further down the street from its current location at the Snugville Street junction.

Residents from the area and the victims’ family members will hold the protest at 1pm to highlight what they claim is the inadequate pedestrian crossing provision.

Forty-eight-year Jacqueline Wilson, a member of the local Tudor Residents Association, was killed when she was hit by a motorcycle as she crossed the Crumlin Road at shops close to Snugville Street.

In June 2010, another 48-year-old member of the residents association, John Bambrick, was also killed after he was struck by a car at the same spot.

Neither of the victims had used the zebra crossing, which is located a short distance away.

Eileen Woods, sister of Jacqueline Wilson, said: “The pedestrian crossing at the Snugville Street junction is in the wrong place for people coming from and going to the local shops. We met with Roads Service and the PSNI after John Bambrick’s death and told them that the existing zebra crossing needs to be replaced by a pelican crossing located right at the shops. There needs to be a fast response to this problem before there is another road tragedy.

“My sister was down to earth and good fun and was popular in the area.

“I haven’t been able to cry for her yet. My mother is devastated, as are the rest of the family.”

Mr Bambrick’s mother Violet (72) said: “Some days are harder than others, I still can’t believe he is gone. He was a lovely big fella who was in and out of the house all the time. I can’t accept it yet. I see people not using the crossing, so it makes sense to have it further down. How many other families have to go through this before something is done?”

Community worker Joe Stewart said: “Tudor Residents Association fully support the efforts of local people to bring about an improved pedestrian crossing and a safer environment for people on the Crumlin Road.

“Hopefully there won’t have to be more deaths before action is taken.”

A PSNI spokesperson said: “Police met with representatives of DRD, relatives of road collision victims and members of the local community to discuss incidents of serious road traffic collisions in the area of Crumlin road and Snugville Street. The meeting was productive and an action plan is to be developed.”

A Roads Service spokesperson said: “Roads Service staff have met with representatives of the community and are currently considering the possibility of providing a crossing a short distance away, in front of the shops adjacent to the Vine Centre.

“A further meeting with residents will be arranged in the near future to discuss the options”

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