Road Safety Consultant, Mark Steventon of TMS Consultancy, provided expert witness evidence to Her Majesty’s Coroner at the inquest into the death of an off-duty police sergeant in Swansea earlier this month. Sergeant Louise Lucas died in March 2015 after she was hit by a bus whilst crossing the Kingsway dual carriageway with her friend and her eight-year old daughter.
The unconventional layout of the dual carriageway, which had been redesigned to accommodate the Metro bus lanes, had raised local safety concerns, particularly since the death of another pedestrian in similar circumstances 18 months earlier.
TMS was asked by the Coroner to provide an expert opinion as to whether the road layout was a contributory factor in the fatal accident. Mark Steventon gave evidence at the inquest on 12th October 2016, expressing the opinion that the counter-intuitive direction of traffic flow was one of the causes of the accident, as well as providing an explanation of the road safety audit process and its application to the road design in this case.
After the second fatal accident, the council installed pedestrian guardrail along the centre of the dual carriageway and has altered the prescribed direction of bus traffic. Acting Senior Coroner, Colin Phillips, returned a narrative verdict after Louise’s inquest, stressing that the absence of guardrail at the time was a significant factor.
For the BBC News article in response to the Inquest please click on the following link: