Solar safety solution

WA school zones light-up across the state with more solar powered 40km signs about to be installed

Solar safety solution
Solar safety solution

October 19, 2012

The Western Australian government has doubled funding for flashing solar powered school zone lights for the year ahead, expanding the list of schools by 61 to 143.

"An additional 61 school zones will receive electronic flashing speed zone signs this financial year," WA Transport Minister Troy Buswell announced this week.

Buswell says the rate of installation of the special signs designed to alert drivers to impending 40km/h zones would be doubled.

"The State Government recognises these signs can dramatically improve driver awareness of 40km/h speed zones near schools," he says.

"We are keen to see an increase in the rate of installation so more children can benefit.

"This boost to the flashing lights program has been made possible by the allocation of $2.5million in 2012-13 from the Road Trauma Trust Account."

The rate of installation will be doubled from the 30 sites with these signs installed last year.

WA government policy now sees all red light and speed camera collections going into the state’s Road Trauma Trust Account.

"And we are using it to deliver increased safety for children," says Buswell.

"Our government has placed a strong focus on road safety and the introduction of the flashing school zone signs has been positively received by pedestrians, as well as motorists approaching reduced speed school zone areas."

But Buswell says it’s not possible to install solar powered flashing lights at all schools immediately, given there are more than 530 school zones in Perth’s metropolitan area alone.

"Priority is being given to those locations which experience the greatest potential hazards," he says.

The 40km/h school zones operate on school days from 7.30am-9am and 2.30pm-4pm. Each sign is linked remotely to Main Roads Traffic Operations Centre in Perth. The typical cost for each school zone is about $40,000.

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