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  1. ITV Report

School parking nightmare: 'We're just waiting for an accident to happen'

A primary school in Bristol says traffic problems at the beginning and end of the school day have become so extreme that it's only a matter of time before a child gets hurt.

May Park Primary school says the school run can often descend into chaos Credit: ITV West Country

The area around May Park primary school in Eastville is densely populated - with residents already parked back to back. The school has had to expand in recent years, and now has nearly 800 pupils. With many living too far away to walk, the school run can often descend into chaos.

Staff say they have begged parents to park in neighbouring streets and walk the rest of the way to school, with double yellow lines and 'Keep Clear' road markings designed to keep people away.

But at the school gate families told ITV News that these measures were no longer working - that rush hour sees the area in front of the school become congested and unsafe, and that sometimes parents even get aggressive when they're asked to move their cars away from the front of the school

As everyone tries to cram their car into a narrow space around the school, residents have reported people parking on the pavements and even blocking their driveways.

I'm concerned for all our residents, we're surrounded by elderly, vulnerable people who can't access their homes, and our own risk assessment of the dangers of the school comes out as 'High Risk'.

We're just waiting for an accident to happen.

– Stuart Albery, Deputy Head

One family are worried that it could be putting their severely disabled brother at risk. The school run problems mean their driveway is frequently blocked, and there are concerns that paramedics couldn't get to the house in an emergency.

It got so bad that they've have written a letter to the school begging them for help.

A letter sent to the school by an exasperated family Credit: ITV West Country

Deputy head Stuart Albery says he was really embarrassed when he was first handed the letter.

Desperate times call for desperate measures - the school have brought in as many measures as they can to persuade parents to keep their cars away from the cramped streets around the school gates.

These children have been acting as travel ambassadors - handing out unofficial "parking tickets" to people they see flaunting the rules.

Unofficial Credit: ITV West Country

But these unofficial ticketings simply aren't enough. Yellow lines and signs are meant to divert parents to neighbouring streets - but the school says it needs more backup to enforce the measures. They're calling on the council to bring in traffic wardens and extend road markings to to protect the children and preserve the resident's parking areas.

In a statement the council said:

In response to the concerns about regulating traffic outside May Park Primary School the council have already introduced several traffic calming measures. These include installing a raised speed table, providing safer crossing points, enforceable School Keep Clear markings and double yellow lines to deter inappropriate parking. We are also looking into introducing additional School Keep Clear markings in order to make crossings at the school safer.

– Bristol City Council

But with 120 more children coming to the school over the next few years, staff say the situation is getting urgent. Unless something changes soon, they're worried that traffic could lead to tragedy.