McAleer highlights transport safety issues in Plumbridge
West Tyrone MLA Declan McAleer has called on Translink to urgently review bus passenger safety in Plumbridge following the flash flood, which damaged the bridge and associated footpath. Mr McAleer was speaking after attending a site meeting with the local Translink Manager, Sean Falls.
Mr McAleer said:
"The issue of safety and congestion on the bridge has been a long running concern for local people, particularly for the parents of children who get transport to school from this location each day.
"There is a high volume of traffic in the morning and evening, which turns the bridge into a bottleneck, and combined with a large number of pupils getting the bus, this has created safety fears. These concerns have been compounded by the recent flood, which damaged the bridge wall and rendered the pathway unusable. Last week, I attended a meeting with senior TransportNI officials to press for progress on repairing bridges and pathways damaged by the flood.
"On foot of locals fears, and in recognition that the schools are back from holidays this week, I requested an on-site metting with the local transport manager to discuss the concerns in more detail and to press for consideration of safer alternatives.
"The meeting was constructive and Mr Falls took on board the concerns put to him. He undertook to consider the options and consult with the Education Authority, which also uses the area as a collection point for school pupils.
"I appreciate that this is not the first time the issue has been raised. I recognise that a long-term solution is needed, but in the interim I feel strongly that steps must be taken to improve the safety of passengers who get the bus from this location each day and I am hopeful that a safer solution can be found."