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Road Safety 


Nearly 100 pedestrians are killed each year in the United Kingdom, and approximately 45,000 injured. Pedestrians make up over a quarter of all road deaths in the United Kingdom and this is why it is so important for everyone to be aware when out and about.
  • Pelican crossing
    At a pelican crossing, pedestrians control the traffic by pushing a button. Push the button to cross and wait until the red man turns green. Look both ways and check that the traffic has stopped before crossing.

    After a short time the green man will begin to flash. This is to warn you that it will soon turn back to red. If you have already started to cross, there should be time to finish crossing safely.

    Puffin crossings (Pedestrian user friendly intelligent crossing)
    Puffin crossings look very similar to Pelicans. Puffin crossings are an updated version of a pelican crossing. One of the main differences is that the red and green man signals are just above the WAIT box and not on the other side of the road. Pedestrians should press the button on the box.

    Puffin crossings have special sensors built in which can detect a pedestrian waiting and make sure that traffic remains stopped until all the pedestrians have crossed the road. Puffins do not have a flashing green man for pedestrians or a flashing amber for drivers.

    Toucan crossing
    A toucan crossing is similar to a pelican crossing, but it's designed to help cyclists cross the road as well as pedestrians. Remember that toucan crossings are different to pelican crossings, because they don't have the flashing green man that warns you that the lights are about to change.

    Zebra crossing
    When crossing on a zebra crossing, wait on the kerb until you are sure the traffic has stopped. Look out for overtaking vehicles while you are crossing. Remember drivers need plenty of time to see pedestrians to slow down and stop safely. Keep looking and listening both ways in case a driver or rider has not seen you.

  • In some locations, where a pedestrian crossing cannot be justified, a pedestrian refuge (traffic island) may be placed. These narrow the road and allow pedestrians to cross in 2 halves with a safe place to wait in the middle. Pedestrians should cross with care as drivers have priority at traffic islands.
  • We receives many requests each year for new crossings. To help use precious resources to best effect, each site is surveyed and the results compared with national criteria to identify the most needy locations. The main factors measured are the number of people crossing and the amount of traffic.

    Other factors include the number of injures on the road near the site and local features such as hospitals, schools and shops. A list is then drawn up in order of priority with the worst site for pedestrians at the top of the list.

  • Green Cross Code for everyone.

    Find a safe place to cross then stop
    The safest places to cross are protected places such as Pelican Crossings or Zebra crossings, but you must still ensure that traffic has stopped before you cross.

    If there are no protected places then you must find a place where you can see traffic and drivers can see you. This means away from parked cars, and if possible, not on a road junction where traffic could be turning.

    Stop just before you get to the kerb
    Stop in a position where you can see the traffic and the drivers can see you. Stop a little way back from the kerb, not right on the edge, because if traffic passes to close you could be pulled into the road by passing traffic.

    Look all around for traffic and listen
    Look and listen carefully in all directions, if you have to cross near a junction you must look and listen for traffic using the side road as well as that on the main road. Remember that drivers have enough to do watching for traffic and they may not think to look for pedestrians. It is better to cross well away from junctions if you can.

    If traffic is coming, let it pass
    If you can see or hear any traffic coming let it pass, it is very difficult to judge the speed of oncoming traffic so if there is any coming it is safer to wait. Even when traffic seems to be a long way off it could be going fast. When the traffic has passed look all round and listen again.

    When it is safe walk straight across the road - do not run
    Only when you are sure it is safe should cross the road. Then walk across, in a straight line, not diagonally, and don't run or you may fall. But still keep on looking and listening for traffic while you cross.


Road Safety Team

Roycraft House

15 Linton Road


IG11 8HE


Phone: 020 8215 3005

Email: 3000direct@lbbd.gov.uk