Littlehampton schoolboy injured in crash with car on new road outside academy - ‘We already had some safety concerns’

A Littlehampton principal has expressed concerns over a new road after a schoolboy was involved in collision with a car.

Wednesday, 15th December 2021, 12:58 pm

Morgan Thomas, principal of The Littlehampton Academy, said a young boy was ‘knocked off his bike’ on the morning of Friday, December 10. The incident was reported to the police.

It comes after Mr Thomas had previously warned over ‘potentially faster traffic patterns’, once the new Fitzalan Link Road was built. The road had been commissioned by developer Persimmon to join the new Lyminster bypass at the A259. Click here to read more

Mr Thomas told the Gazette: “The road opened on Wednesday afternoon and, as a school, we already had some safety concerns about the new road.”

Morgan Thomas, principal of The Littlehampton Academy, said a young boy was involved in a collision on the morning of Friday, December 10. The incident was reported to the police. SUS-211215-120511001

In a blog, posted on the academy website, Mr Thomas said the student has now been discharged from hospital with only minor injuries, but added: “It was obviously very upsetting for him and his family. I am keen to ensure that we do not see another accident which could lead to serious injury or death. 

“As such, I had already contacted the West Sussex Highways principal engineer about this stretch of road before today and I have now followed this up with a further letter to highlight my concerns.”

The principal highlighted the ‘total absence’ of safety barriers at the crossing.

He added: “Effectively, this means that cyclists and pedestrians can emerge from either the school or the gate at Highdown Road and travel straight across the road at speed.  Whilst, in an ideal world, we expect all children to stop, look, listen and use the crossing correctly it is abundantly clear that this is not happening, hence the need for barriers.”

Morgan Thomas, principal of The Littlehampton Academy, said a young boy was involved in a collision on the morning of Friday, December 10. The incident was reported to the police. SUS-211215-120521001

He was also concerned by the speed limit and the ‘lack of traffic calming measures’.

Mr Thomas asked parents to not stop and park on Fitzalan Road or on the roundabout when picking their children up, adding: “It is unsafe to do so, please arrange to collect them away from the roundabout area.”

He wrote: “I have deployed a large number of colleagues at the crossing while students get used to it, which is where we have seen students running across the road, crossing without looking and cycling or scooting across the road at various other points. 

“We are also talking to students about this in tutor time again next week. 

Finally, the young man today was wearing a cycle helmet which almost certainly saved him from serous injury. 

“I’m sorry to say, he is in the minority.  Most of the young people who cycle to TLA do not wear helmets and this is extremely worrying.  

“Please, please ensure your child has a cycle helmet and please enure that they cross roads safely and at the right points.”