Isle of Wight coroner warns of further deaths if crossing not installed

Caroline Sumeray has written to the Isle of Wight Council’s highways department to express concerns after a pensioner was knocked down and killed in Wootton High Street last summer.

Police tape

There will be further deaths on a busy high street unless a safe crossing is installed, the Isle of Wight Coroner has warned.

Caroline Sumeray has written to the Isle of Wight Council’s highways department to express concerns after a pensioner was knocked down and killed in Wootton High Street last summer.

She said future deaths would occur unless action is taken.

Tragic death
Jacqueline Valvona, 90 of Homebray House, Wootton, died from multiple traumatic injuries two weeks after she was struck by a BMW car while trying to cross the road, outside the Sloop Inn, on August 12.

Witnesses described how Mrs Valvona indicated she was heading towards to the nearby bus stop when she stepped into the road.

Campaign for crossing
Her death has led to a campaign for a new pedestrian crossing.

Mrs Sumeray said:

“There are a great many elderly people who visit the Sloop Inn due to the affordability of the roast meals there, and I have heard evidence there are more than 40 elderly people living in Homebray House, which is a short distance up the steep hill.”

Some pensioners may struggle to climb the four degree incline, the Isle of Wight Coroner said.

Seven slight injury accidents
In the previous five years, there have been seven slight injury accidents in the area, not including the number of near-misses, which are not recorded.

Mrs Sumeray said a crossing would allow pedestrians to cross the road and catch the bus up the hill, which would help those with mobility issues.

A senior police office, who gave evidence at the inquest, said he would support the installation of either a pelican or zebra crossing at that point.

Further survey to be undertaken
An spokesperson for Island Roads said:

“We undertook a feasibility design and survey for a crossing, following an instruction from the Isle of Wight Council.

“The survey considered vehicle and pedestrian movements in the locality and was undertaken at a time of the week — Sunday lunchtime — when data showed the Sloop Inn to be at its busiest.

“Island Roads will also be undertaking a further survey of vehicle and pedestrian movements during the busy summer period to enable the council and Island Roads to determine whether there is a need for a crossing at this location.”


This article is from the BBC’s LDRS (Local Democracy Reporter Service) scheme, which OnTheWight is taking part in. Some alterations and additions may be been made by OnTheWight. Ed

Image: Ray Forster under CC BY 2.0

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Between the PH and Home are Two existing crossings, More required ? I think not