Roads

London's top traffic cop has reminded us that August is National Road Victims Month and asked us to watch a short film made by the charity RoadPeace. In the UK five people a day are killed on the roads and more than 60 seriously injured. Scandinavian cities, pursuing a Vision Zero policy, have almost eliminated road deaths.

In response to a spate of anti-social behaviour in the vicinity of Alexandra Palace and in the surrounding park, in particular dangerous and noisy driving and pavement parking by 'boy racers', Alexandra Palace Way will be closed at night until further notice. All parking bays will be closed throughout the day and night. The W3 bus will be diverted during the road closures.

The top end of Hedge Lane will be closed for Thames Water work from 29th April to 26th May, though the Yasar Halim store will still be accessible by road from the Green Lanes end of Hedge Lane. Through traffic will be diverted either to the north (via the A10 and Church Street West) or to the south (via the North Circular Road). A temporary one-way system will be in force in the area comprising Park Avenue, New River Crescent, Lightcliffe Road, Windsor Road and Osborne Road.

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Footage on Twitter of the police chasing a drug driver from near Ritz Parade, then along the A105 through Palmers Green and Winchmore Hill, eventually ending in the chased car crashing outside St Stephen's Bush Hill Park.

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Hackney council is planning to implement measures to curb rat-running during the coronavirus lockdown, with the aim of protecting walkers and cyclists, allowing them more space to socially distance, and as a countermeasure to increased speeding by reckless drivers taking advantage of much lighter traffic levels. By doing so Hackney stands out from other UK local authorities, but cities in other countries all over the world have already done much more to reallocate road space away from cars.

Detective Superintendent Andy Cox from the Met's Roads and Transport Policing Command has recorded a YouTube video in which he talks about the incidence of extreme speeding during the coronavirus lockdown and police operations against all speeding in London. He urges all drivers not to speed and passengers to ask drivers to slow down - speeding should, he says, be as socially unacceptable as drink driving.

As UK doctors call for lower speed limits to reduce the pressure on health services, London's top traffic cop has gone online to plead for slower driving and to highlight examples of criminal behaviour by drivers taking advantage of clearer roads to flagrantly breach speed limits.

This video says it all, in graphic terms about what has gone wrong and what we need to do to make our roads safe for everyone, not just drivers. It should be shown in every council meeting, every school, every highway authority, every political party meeting and the politicians must be made to sign up for proper, real action, not the toying around the edges they normally do.

Palmers Green's first ever pop-up parklet event, on Sunday 15th September, was a great success. There were plenty of visitors, the weather was ideal (believe it or not, there was a time not so long ago when it didn't rain every day), the location - at the Green Lanes end of Devonshire Road - was well chosen, nearby businesses joined in - Stitch! even opened on a Sunday specially - and the council was cooperative. But most of all, the event succeeded because of hard work and careful planning by a team of around 20 people and because it was such a great idea!

New government guidance issued this week will simplify the process for organising play streets. It will no longer be necessary for organisers to advertise the temporary road closures.

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