CALLS are being made to reduce the number of lorries driving past two primary schools over fears a child will be involved in a serious accident.

Cllr Angela Kirkham-Raine, a member of Ryedale District Council, has raised concerns over the increase in HGVs travelling past Malton primary and St Mary’s RC since the weight limit was introduced to the level crossing in Norton.

“I have been contacted by both parents and staff from both schools who are extremely concerned about the increase in lorries driving along Highfield Road,” she said. “St Mary’s has closed a staff car park to enable their families to get off the pavement outside because of the sheer danger to everyone concerned.

“The ban on HGVs in Castlegate cannot be lifted due to air pollution, but the re-routing of lorries past the schools is putting children’s lives at risk. Parents have had their wing mirrors knocked off their cars time and time again. Surely it won’t be long before it’s a child.

“We need the district council to wake up and lobby North Yorkshire County Council (NYCC) Highways and the Government to build two roundabouts on the A64 at Broughton Road and Musley Bank before a tragedy happens.”

Members of NYCC’s Thirsk and Malton constituency committee agreed to recommend the 7.5-tonne weight restriction at Norton level crossing is made permanent at a meeting last Wednesday.

The meeting was told highways were continuing to examine data from a computer generated traffic model, but councillors had no option but to decide whether to make the ban permanent or let it expire.

Malton member Cllr Lindsay Burr said the council’s top priority had to be for the health of residents and should adopt a clean air policy.

She said: “Air pollution is a significant threat to public health and I have campaigned for many many years to get HGVs out of the towns. There will always be some people who will not agree to this. However, it is now safe to push our prams and walk with our small children up and down Malton and Norton.”