Guardrails beside a pedestrian crossing in Portlaoise that stopped children from stepping out onto the road, have been removed.
The measure has been taken at a Mountmellick Road junction to comply with new design regulations, “for the safety of all road users, including pedestrians and cyclists”. The apparent contradiction was highlighted at the April meeting of Portlaoise Municipal District by Cllr Caroline Dwane Stanley.
She has asked that the rail beside Rossvale estate, removed when the council installed a pedestrian crossing, be restored.
“I don’t believe for one minute this is in the interests of safety. For years we have been trying to get a pedestrian crossing at Rossvale. There was a ten foot black railing removed and only a small section put back. The residents want the green area and the fence put back,” said the Sinn Féin councillor.
Children are not slipping out across the road in the gap between the end of the rail, and the crossing.
“They are running through the gap out between cars. It’s an accident waiting to happen,” she said.
Kieran Kehoe, Laois County Council Director of Service and Town Manager for Portlaoise said the the engineer would visit the site again, but said they had to comply with design standards.
“If we don’t, and something happens, we would probably be liable, but we will definitely have a look,” he said.