Bath & North East Somerset Council takes the safety of residents' children seriously and provides a team of dedicated school crossing patrols throughout the range of the Authority. We are not required to do so by law ( under the Road Traffic Act 1984) but we do so as a matter of safety. The provision of an SCP Service is a discretionary, not statutory, function and the responsibility for ensuring the safety of children on their way to and from school is, and must always remain, a parental one.
There are currently 36 sites across the district with all sites operating Monday to Friday, each morning and afternoon, during term time. Many schools have a school crossing patrol officer or "lollipop" person operating nearby. Please give them your support and consideration as they perform their duties. After all, they are there for the children's safety.
Following a change in the law in 2001, patrols are required to stop traffic to cross any pedestrian, not just children.
ADVICE FOR DRIVERS
Drivers and riders must follow the procedure in The Highway Code:
- On seeing the sign displayed upright, STOP. The pedestrian crossing is active.
- Demonstrate you are a safe driver. Approach the site with caution and stop a safe distance away from the patrol with your handbrake on.
- Remain stationary, with your handbrake on, until the patrol has entered the carriageway, crossed the pedestrians and returned to the pavement. Only then has the crossing finished.
- Patrols are trained only to enter the carriageway when it is safe to do so and never to hold up traffic for longer than is absolutely necessary. Please be patient with the patrol as before they leave their ALL VEHICLES MUST STOP position in the centre of the carriageway, they will ensure that everyone is safely on the pavement and that no one is about to cross.
ADVICE FOR PEDESTRIANS
Parents and children must follow the procedure:
- Parents can help by encouraging children to cross with the patrol’s procedure. Do hold hands with your child before you reach the crossing site. Stop, look and listen to the instructions given by the patrol. Children on scooters and bicycles must dismount and cross as a pedestrian.
- Stand back from the kerb and the movement of the sign.
- Do not cross the road unless you are signalled to do so by the school crossing patrol. Always cross in front of the patrol, never cross behind them where they cannot see you.
The patrol will give pedestrians two instructions:
- “Please wait” until the patrol has checked the traffic movement and is positioned in the centre of the carriageway displaying the sign in the “all vehicles must stop” position
- “Please cross”. Look before you leave the pavement and continue to look as you cross in front of the patrol, in a straight line where the patrol can see you.
- Do ensure you are walking with your child as they cross and continue to do so until they are safely on the pavement on the far side.
PARKING OUTSIDE SCHOOLS
Keep a patrol crossing site safe. Child pedestrians need a clear road crossing location so they can Stop, Look, Listen and Think!
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
.....What happens if a driver fails to stop for the patrol?
If you are a pedestrian and have witnessed this offence please stop and give your name and details to the patrol. You may be called to verify the number plate of the vehicle.
The patrol will ensure the safety of the children and record details of the incident, including witnesses, to report to their line manager. The police will follow up the incident and can offer advice, education, or, in serious incidents, prosecution.
The Council supports the education of offending drivers and riders. Drivers and riders prosecuted for failing to stop for a school crossing patrol can receive 3 penalty points on their driving licence and up to £1000 in fines. Bath & North East Somerset Council will report all offences to ensure the safety of vulnerable members of the public who use our services. STOP means STOP!
.....When does the patrolled crossing operate?
Monday to Friday, mornings and afternoons, during school term time. Your school can give you the duty times and location of the patrol.
.....What if the patrol is absent?
In the event of a patrol being sick or unable to work, the school will do its best to inform parents, either by text message or letter, as soon as is reasonably possible. If your school has a relief patrol they will be contacted to attend duty. In the instance of a long term sickness then the service will look to recruit a temporary replacement patrol. Patrols absent from a zebra or light controlled crossing will not have relief support. Do ensure you have an alternative route to safer places to cross the road and that you have planned this with your child. If for any reason the patrol is absent and cannot be covered by a relief or otherwise, parents will need to work with their children to ensure they use a safer route to school.
.....Can anyone step in to cover an absent patrol?
No. Patrols receive specialised training, are subject to various checks, and when qualified, are covered by Council Insurance relating to their work on the highway. When patrols are absent parents and/or school staff can, of course, escort children across the road, however they have no legal right to stop the traffic.
.....Where are patrols sited?
Patrols are sited where there is a clear desire line for parents and children to cross the road to/from school; where the numbers of pedestrians crossing and the number of vehicles passing meet the required numerical criteria, and where there is no other crossing facility such as a zebra or puffin crossing nearby. Each site is assessed by traffic engineers to ensure it would be a safe place to cross. They take into account things like vehicle speeds and visibility. We are more than happy to assess a requirement for a new patrolled site.
.....Requests for new patrol sites
Requests can come from a number of sources including a school, member of the public and the Town or Parish Council. National guidelines provide objective criteria for the establishment of a patrol site, based on a pedestrian and vehicle count, that when combined must reach a threshold value. Before a crossing patrol can be justified a site assessment also takes into account environmental factors relating to each site such as: carriageway width, speed/visibilty, junctions, traffic accident histroy, traffic flows and age of pedestrians.
.....What if drivers are ignoring the parking restrictions?
You, the school, and/or other agencies can request parking enforcement from the Council. Ring Council Connect on 01225 394041 to report any issues, giving details of the location and the day and time the offence(s) are occurring. The Council will then instruct Civil Enforcement Officers to visit the site and issue tickets where appropriate.
JOINING THE TEAM
Vacancies for permanent and casual staff arise in Keynsham, Midsomer Norton, Radstock and Bath. Being a patrol really is a most enjoyable and rewarding job for people of any age. If you can spare up to 7 hours per week during school term time, enjoy being outside in all weathers and helping your local community, then why not apply to be a School Crossing Patrol? Full uniform and training are provided.
Applicants must be:
- in good health and able to work in all weather conditions
- able to communicate well
- have a general knowledge of the Highway Code.
Successful candidates will be required to undergo an enhanced Disclosure and Barring (DBS) check and a medical assessment.
Hours of work
Exact duty times vary from site to site, however, you will work a duty that could be between 60 – 90 minutes each day, 5 -7 hours a week, during term time only.
Alternatively, you can apply to be a casual school crossing patrol relief to cover the duties of an existing school crossing patrol if they are not able to work for any reason.
£8.20 per hour, pro rata. In addition, you will receive holiday pay along with other benefits of working for a local authority employer.
How to apply
Please use our website http://www.bathnes.gov.uk/a-z/j;
The advert, School Crossing Patrols POST 50900/1, has an application form for both permanent and casual relief posts, the job description and person specification. Alternatively, if you would prefer a paper copy of the application pack or you simply wish to find out more about the role before applying, please ring 01225 394922, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Other useful links:
Signals for Drivers - Signals by authorised persons.pdf
Child Road Safety Education - http://think.direct.gov.uk/index.html
Rules for Road Crossing - https://www.gov.uk/rules-pedestrians-1-to-35/crossing-the-road-7-to-17
View Current Vacancies