Calls for speed cuts after boy is hit by car

Front L-R: Cllr: John Ungar & Katharine Wratten Protest Organiser (Correct Spelling of Name). SUS-141206-101139001
Front L-R: Cllr: John Ungar & Katharine Wratten Protest Organiser (Correct Spelling of Name). SUS-141206-101139001

Old Town residents are calling for speed restrictions in their road after a five-year-old boy was knocked down by a car earlier this month.

The little boy was crossing the road in Central Avenue when he was struck by a car on the evening of Wednesday June 4 and although the air ambulance was called, he was taken to hospital in Brighton by road but was not seriously hurt.

The accident has led to fresh calls from residents in the busy road to police, Eastbourne Borough Council and the county council for a lower speed limit and speed reduction road furniture like speed humps.

Katherine Wratten, who lives in Central Avenue, said, “This was an accident waiting to happen.

“We have been asking for so long for the speed limit to be reduced but keep being told nothing can be done.

“Fortunately the little boy last week wasn’t seriously hurt but it could have been so much worse. There are so many families around here with small children and drivers come racing up and down this road at 60-70 miles an hour every day.

“We need a reduction in the speed limit and chicanes to make drivers slow down and we need it before a young child is knocked down and killed or really seriously injured. The residents are now planning a petition.

An East Sussex County Council spokesman said, “We’re very sorry to hear about this incident and relieved to hear the boy involved did not suffer serious injuries. Sussex Police records show the road safety record for Central Avenue has been relatively good in recent years and we would, therefore, be unable to prioritise any improvements only on road safety grounds. However, an initial assessment shows the road may be eligible for funding through our annual capital programme for local transport improvements. Over the next few months we will carry out a more detailed assessment to enable us to assess if a scheme in Central Avenue can be put forward for inclusion in the draft capital programme for 2015/16. A decision on which schemes receive funding will be made at the end of March 2015.”