‘Very little can be done’ to resolve school traffic issue
Major concerns were raised over the safety of coaches dropping and collecting secondary school students at Talbot Green with the current situation described as 'chaotic'.
Cllr Leonard Kelly raised the issue once again at the December Borough Council meeting, seeking to see if any resolution had been found. Borough Engineer Sean Kavanagh suggested that very little could be done to remedy the situation.
'We've reviewed the situation and what you have is about fifteen 28 seater coaches dropping off there over a period of 12 to 15 minutes,' he said. 'Realistically, there's no place to accommodate such a volume of vehicles for such a short period of time. There are no excessive delays in Talbot Green given the amount of traffic that passes through in a 15 minute period.'
Cllr Tom Forde disagreed with this, saying that he's regularly stuck in traffic for longer than 15 minutes near Talbot Green.
Mr Kavanagh again said that the council was limited in the actions it could take.
'There's no physical way to accommodate buses anywhere else,' he said. 'Also, these are private bus companies. We have no mechanism to engage with them. It's outside of our control.'
Some of the members refused to accept this. Cllr Leonard Kelly said that there was a risk of damage to local cars as a result of the chaos at collection times.
'We have a large volume of kids coming out and crossing the road there,' he added. 'Often they're coming out in dark and slippery conditions and negotiating traffic. It's an accident waiting to happen.'
Cllr Forde stated that footpaths are being damaged at Talbot Green as a result of buses parking on them and suggested that perhaps there would be more room to accommodate coaches up around Wexford Park. Cllr Lawlor said that this had been suggested before, but it hadn't been accepted by either the bus drivers or the students.
Cllr Davy Hynes expressed his annoyance at being told there was nothing the council could do.
'If any of us were blocking up the whole road with our cars, we'd soon be told to move on,' he blasted.
'I live in Davitt Road and I don't leave the house between 3 and 4 p.m. it's that bad.
Mayor Lawlor said:
'I suppose they can be stopped if required, but it seems they simply refuse to go anywhere else. This has been going on 20 years now.'
Concluding the discussion, Mr Kavanagh said: 'We have consulted with the gardaí on this and they obviously feel it's not a pressing issue. But I can certainly raise it again with them.'