Debate on road junction improvements following tragic death of Sheffield teenager hit by a bus

Bus accident at the junction of Castle Street and Haymarket in Sheffield.
Bus accident at the junction of Castle Street and Haymarket in Sheffield.
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A city centre road junction has been branded an ‘utter nightmare’ in the aftermath of a teenager’s death.

A petition calling for the installation of a crossing was set up by bus driver Melissa Hewitt, aged 28.

Summer Lee Seymour

Summer Lee Seymour

It was signed by 7,834 people before it was presented to the full council meeting.

Ms Hewitt said: “I didn’t know her personally and neither do I know the family or her partner, but this beautiful girl lost her life and I think it could have been prevented had there been traffic lights and a pedestrian crossing installed.

“It is really bad driving round the city centre, especially in this area.

“I’ve come across lots of near misses myself and it won’t be the last time if something isn’t done about this soon.”

Jake Ford was seriously injured after being hit by a bus

Jake Ford was seriously injured after being hit by a bus

Labour Coun Terry Fox, cabinet member for environment and transport, said that many options would be considered including looking at a change of priorities for traffic and road markings.

The idea of a crossing has been passed on to the highways committee for consideration.

Coun Fox said: “It’s incredibly sad that we have to debate this. It’s a real tragedy.

“Something should be done and we’ll look at different options, it’s all in the mix.

“I’ve recently been in touch with the police and who have said they are on the last few pages of their report, which will go to the coroner and we will take it from there.

“Recommendations will be passed on to the highways committee to consider a number of options available to improve the junction, taking into account the findings of the police report.”

Mosborough Labour Coun Tony Downing said: “As a bus driver of 32 years, I know the particular junction too well and have witnessed many near misses.

“Something that I feel could help would be to change the traffic priorities.”

Central ward Green Coun Rob Murphy said: “If you go down there, it really is an accident waiting to happen.”

Stocksbridge and Upper Don UKIP Coun Jack Clarkson said: “That location we all know is a nightmare both for pedestrians and bus drivers.

“It’s a stretch of road where people are crossing and coming out between buses. Mums with prams and elderly people are struggling to get across.

“For bus drivers as well, there are lots of bus stops and they all have to jostle for position.

“It’s an utter nightmare down there. I agree with Terry Fox that something needs to be done and for it to be looked at. It’s still a very busy area.

“The council have been putting in 20mph zones on some of our estates and maybe this can be looked at.

All councillors who spoke in the debate offered their condolences and thoughts to the Seymour and Ford families, and thanked Ms Hewitt for bringing the petition in front of the council.