'Alternative to the Long Rock crossing could have killed us'
A MOTHER says her family was nearly knocked down by a car on a route suggested by Cornwall Council as an alternative to the pedestrian railway crossing at Long Rock which it closed on safety grounds.
Tracey Lambert, along with her husband, father and two children, were making their way along the road to the beach at Marazion on Sunday when the near-miss happened.
The family was crossing the junction leading to St Theresa's – a wide section of the road where traffic approaches from all directions – when a car failed to stop and drove out in front of an oncoming vehicle.
"Had this car not emergency-stopped it would have ploughed into the side of the vehicle that just pulled out and pushed it into us on the footpath on the railway bridge," said Mrs Lambert.
"Needless to say, we were all very shaken. The kids clung to us, scared to death."
The busy road, which has a 60mph limit, is one alternative route to the beach suggested by the council after it closed the Mexico crossing at Long Rock last year – action taken on a coroner's recommendation following a fatal accident.
The incident comes less than a week after Cornwall Council confirmed an order closing the pedestrian crossing.
Mrs Lambert said the family had no option but to take that route: "It's unreasonable for a two-year-old and a six-year-old to walk an extra quarter of a mile round-trip via the road, especially as there is no real room to cross with traffic.
"The council can't take away a footpath and put people on the road. I would say: please use your common sense and realise that you are putting families at risk walking along roads rather than a public right of way.
"Perhaps the council would like to travel the two alternative routes at the height of a two-year-old and see how frightening these routes are."
The Lamberts say they are seriously concerned that should the Mexico pedestrian crossing remain closed, this is the route that their daughter Faye will have to take when walking to school.
Mrs Lambert is now warning that others could face similar hazards, particularly visitors unfamiliar with the area.
"The worst thing is there are people who don't know the road," she said. "It can be dangerous for pedestrians."
The permanent closure is currently being appealed against by the Friends of Long Rock Mexico Crossing.
Group chairman Rob Nance last week told The Cornishman that a survey of the area had proved that the two alternative routes suggested by the council were unsafe.
Cornwall Council said: "Since the footpath was closed there have been two alternative routes to Marazion for pedestrians. One option is to use the coast path; the other is along the road.
"While we appreciate the coast path takes pedestrians on a longer route, we would encourage walkers to exercise their own judgement in choosing which is more appropriate for them."