Mum’s urgent call for safe crossing outside South London school after cyclist knocks over daughter, 6, causing face injuries

A South London mum has made an urgent call for a safer crossing outside two primary schools after her six-year-old daughter was knocked over while using the crossing by a cyclist going at speed.

Anna Sandgren’s daughter, Marta, suffered injuries to her knee and her face in the incident in Putney on September 18 and remains “extremely scared” of cyclists.

The Putney resident is calling for a range of safety measures before a fatal accident happens.

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The crossing in front of Oasis Academy on Lower Richmond Road

Anna, 42, was on a Saturday morning bike ride with her daughter when they stopped at the crossing outside Oasis Academy on Lower Richmond Road.

The pair got off their bikes, looked both ways, and began to cross.

The cars stopped, but a cyclist raced towards them “at 50km/hr” on a “racing bike” with no sign of stopping.

Anna thought at the time: ” Oh my god he is coming and crashing into her.”

And he did.

Anna says she didn’t know if her daughter was “alive or dead” until she heard Marta screaming.

She carried her daughter to a bench, and luckily a doctor in one of the cars rushed over to check her over.

“She was shaking a lot as it was such a hard hit,” Anna explained.

Marta’s knee was badly hurt and her face was scratched.

“But she had a helmet on and that saved her,” said Anna.

The cyclist pulled his bike to the side and asked if he could do anything, but Marta was too shocked and only managed to ask him to stop next time and check his brakes, as he blamed the collision on them not working.

She didn’t get his name, but says he seemed to be in his late twenties or thirties.

Luckily, Marta was okay and after around half an hour, they slowly walked home.

Anna says her daughter is “physically fine now, but mentally she is extremely scared of cyclists”.

She says Marta, who goes to one of the schools near the crossing, is still looking for the man who hit her.

The incident prompted Anna, the global director of a company that sells eco-friendly cleaning products, to set up a petition calling for safety measures to keep children safe and prevent a more serious accident happening on the crossing.

She told MyLondon: “This was the last time I wanted to see something like this happen.

“This is a dangerous crossing and dangerous road every day year round.

“The cars and the cyclists believe they own the road but there are so many kids around this area – there are two schools here.”

The petition has been signed by more than 500 people, and other concerned parents shared their experiences on the crossing in the comments.

One wrote: “I’ve seen the dangers of this crossing daily and it makes my hair stand on end. From faint Belisha beacons to drooping branches to faded zebra lines to huge buses obscuring the view, this is a fatal accident waiting to happen!! Could it be the most badly-marked school crossing in the whole world I wonder? The standard of road safety planning here has been nothing short of disgraceful.”

Another said: “My son goes to All Saints school and was nearly knocked over by a cyclist on this crossing last week. He was crossing sensibly with me and was really shaken by the experience. The cyclist also swore at us and didn’t seem to understand how zebra crossing’s are supposed to operate.”

A third commented: “I’m signing because my children go to Oasis and I want them to cross safely. I have had too many near misses myself & it is not good enough.”

Despite the fact that hundreds of school children use the crossing every day to get to Oasis Academy or All Saints’ Primary, the crossing does not have red lights or warning signs of schools in the area.

The petition is calling for:

  • A safety barrier along the pavement on both sides of the road
  • Red lights on the crossing from Oasis School to the Common
  • A zebra crossing with pelican light from The Spencer Pub to the Common
  • Traffic cameras on both sides of the road
  • Improved street lighting
  • Slow down signs and warning signs of children crossing the road

Anna reported the incident to the council and her MP.

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MP Fleur Anderson expressed her support for the changes.

She said: “The crossing opposite the Oasis Primary School is very dangerous, and many parents have contacted me about ‘near misses’ or accidents their children have had. The Council must not wait until a worse accident before taking action, but put barriers up now and then more ways to slow the traffic urgently.”

Wandsworth’s cabinet member for transport Councillor John Locker said: “We have already had discussions with Oasis Academy and parents about changing the existing zebra crossing, which pre-dates the school, and have begun exploring the possibility of upgrading to a traffic signal-controlled pelican crossing.

“We will be working on design options and discuss with stakeholders like TfL which controls traffic lights across London and who would need to activate and maintain any new ones at this location.

“I am pleased to say that this year Wandsworth Council has increased capital spending on local transport improvement projects to over £20m. This means at a time when many other local authorities are having to cut back, we are able to continue investing in schemes like this, making sure our streets are safer, healthier, and more attractive for everyone.”

The issue will be raised at a Wandsworth Council meeting on October 13.

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