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Steps to make Lowestoft crossing safer

PUBLISHED: 11:00 14 February 2010 | UPDATED: 16:20 06 July 2010

Samantha Castledine, who sadly died after being hit by a lorry.

Samantha Castledine, who sadly died after being hit by a lorry.

Hayley Mace

Improved road markings and signs will soon be put in place to make a busy pedestrian crossing safer following the death of a six-year-old girl who was on her way to school in Lowestoft.

Improved road markings and signs will soon be put in place to make a busy pedestrian crossing safer following the death of a six-year-old girl who was on her way to school in Lowestoft.

Samantha Castledine died in March 2007 while on her way to Gunton Primary School after she was hit by a lorry when the front wheel of her bicycle started to roll into the road from the central island between the lanes of traffic on the A12 Yarmouth Road.

Now nearly three years after tragedy struck, Highways Agency engineers are preparing to start work next month to improve safety at the crossing near the junction with Hollingsworth Road.

The safety measures will include new warning signs showing that children will be crossing and red banding across the road near the junctions.

The surface at the crossing will also be coloured to make it more obvious to drivers that pedestrians might be crossing.

A Highways Agency spokesman said: “The plans for improvements to the crossing point in Yarmouth Road include new road markings and warning signs to highlight to road users that pedestrians may be crossing the A12 at this location.

“In addition, red surface treatment will be installed to emphasise the location of the crossing point. The design process is progressing well and we have completed the necessary feasibility and safety studies, which need to be carried out before work can begin. We expect to start work in early spring.”

He added: “The Highways Agency and Suffolk County Council are working closely together in order to ensure we work as effectively as possible in Lowestoft.”

In 2008, Suffolk County Council took on an additional crossing patrol officer to work on the busy stretch of road so that both lanes of traffic could be stopped so that children and parents do not have to wait on the central island.

The council has been working with the Highways Agency since then to come up with the new safety scheme.

Samantha Castledine's older sister will be running the London Marathon in her memory this summer.

Jo Woolnough is busy training for the race in April after deciding to take part to raise money for a children's charity nearly three years after the tragic death of her sister.

She will be raising money for Children with Leukaemia and will be running with her friend Michelle Ford, who will be raising money for the East Anglian Air Ambulance.

To sponsor the ladies, visit www.bmycharity.com/JoWoolnough or uk.virginmoneygiving.com/MichelleFord.

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