A fatal accident waiting to happen...Watch this thread
About 5 years ago whilst travelling southbound over Westminster Bridge on the 12 bus, a lady with two children and a pram walked out into the middle of the road in a section notorious for pedestrians walking along the Southbank. Luckily as we went over the bridge the driver who was going a great deal of speed managed to slow down significantly through breaking and swerving and only missed the lady by a few feet stopping just before she realised a bus was about to hit her. This sticks in my mind as it has to be one of the closest shaves I've ever witnessed whilst being on public transport.
On the 7th of September 2012, in the same location a 12 bus hit a pedestrian (apparently the driver claimed he threw himself in front of the bus and then ended up in the River Thames) the bridge was closed for a few hours and the front of the bus was smashed in. I never heard anything more about this story, but evidence is on Social media.
On the 4th of May 2014 an incident had occurred just after 01:50am, as I approached this area at 03:30am the area was closed off as a crime scene, with the sad thought that once again someone had lost their life. Reports followed that a woman was in a critical condition in the nearby hospital (St Thomas’s), but having seen the scene just after; you realise straight away that with almost 8 hours of road closure it’s unlikely to be good news. She sadly died later that day in hospital, although I believe any efforts was in vain.
For a few days you feel so helpless, knowing that you travel over a location where someone has lost their live so innocently. A few days later I witnessed the London Air Ambulance doctors resuscitating a male who had just been sadly knocked over by a lorry on his bike. This sadly was another fatal of which the aftermath I had witnessed. Things like this really do hit you because it could be you, it could be a friend, it could be a family member – in life you just don’t know because it could happen to anyone, at any time. In 2011 a friend’s sister was killed instantly by a London bus, she was only 12 years old with an amazing future ahead of her.
The efforts and work that emergency services put in really showed during this incident, it is a job but also you can feel the emotions inside them. After all it's human nature.
Last week I came across the name of the tragic student killed 2 months earlier, and I read her story and it saddened me that someone
A quote from 24 hours in A&E sums this story for me.
On Google earth you’ll see 7 or 8 people crossing in this location. It is more convenient than the ‘actual’ crossing some 90 meters south. But there have been so many incidents/accidents in this location and nothing has been done. The bridge has poor visibility moving Southbound coming over the bridge, and if speeding across anyone on the other side has little or no time to react along with the fact that at most times of the days the bridge is a good opportunity to ‘gain time’ by public transport and or other road users. Tourists regularly cross here looking the other way, which is a common problem across hotspots in the Westminster/West End area. Although I don’t know the cause of this particular incident, I believe the above are factors that may or may not have been considered and major changes should be considered to prevent another unnecessary death.
I have previous worked in working groups, specifically those in cycling and pedestrians of which are being innocently killed on a regular basis (see list) along with Transport for London , Southwark Council and the Metropolitan Police in discussing incidents and hotspots. Incidents like the one I have mentioned above could easily have been prevented unfortunately.
So if anyone has spare time for a few hours per month, I would like to set up a working group where we can meet once or twice a month with the idea of getting our thoughts and ideas/suggestions to people higher up to reduce the fatalities involving pedestrians and cyclists. Some of you may know the above girl mentioned, most of you like me DO NOT. It all makes a difference
Once I have some people, we will meet up - engage TfL, Mayor of London, Met Police Serious Collision team to meet with us and provide a hand in this.
Reference: List of Pedestrian & Cycling fatalities.
Like this one
Of course, I have been part of many of them. Mainly TfL, Met Police and research agencies. I have a done a lot of work with these organisations already and continue to be invited to them.
What will yours do that isn't already being done?