Dangerous forecourt is putting lives at risk
PUBLISHED: 14:34 31 March 2009 | UPDATED: 10:49 11 August 2010
RESIDENTS and shopkeepers claim a forecourt outside a shopping parade is putting people s lives at risk. The private forecourt in Longbridge Road, Dagenham, is meant for parking and delivery drop-offs but customers and staff are forced to step directly on
RESIDENTS and shopkeepers claim a forecourt outside a shopping parade is putting people's lives at risk.
The private forecourt in Longbridge Road, Dagenham, is meant for parking and delivery drop-offs but customers and staff are forced to step directly onto the area when they leave shops.
They say cars speed down the forecourt, passing right by the shop doors, leaving pedestrians in danger of being hit.
The pavement, owned by the council, is on the other side of the forecourt.
One angry shopper, Peter Seager, says he was almost hit by a car as he left the Alvin Rose Pharmacy a couple of weeks ago.
Mr Seager told the POST: "As I opened the door a car drove right in front of me. If I had walked out one second earlier I would have been hit.
"People drive so fast along the forecourt and because it's so narrow they have to pass very close to the shop fronts. This makes it very dangerous for anyone leaving the shops."
"I think the only solution would be to ban cars from driving in front of the shops."
The owner of one shop, who asked not to be named, agreed the forecourt was dangerous but said banning vehicles would not be a good idea.
"We need that area for delivery drivers. The council has put up metal fencing so they can't park by the side of the road.
"I would, however, consider putting up concrete posts or benches right outside the shop fronts so people didn't drive so close. We actually put our sign out to slow people down, but unfortunately it keeps getting moved."
After his near miss Mr Seagar contacted Becontree ward councillor Alok Agrawal.
Cllr Agrawal told the POST: "I understand this is private property. However, the safety of my constituents is always my main priority, so I am liaising with the council's highway department to see if there is anything we can do to find a solution."
A council spokesperson said it shared resident's concerns, but because the fore court belongs to the shop owners the authority could not take "immediate enforcement action."
He added: "We are now writing to all of the owners to ensure that they are aware of their responsibility to maintain their property and to deter hazardous driving and obstructive parking.
"The businesses will be encouraged to support the installation of items of street furniture such as bollards to make it physically impossible to drive along the forecourt.
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