Traffic island fall left carer with broken arm

Margaret Woodcock, tripped and fell over one of the traffic islands that separate the parking spaces and cycle lane in Esplanade, Eastney  ''Picture: Allan Hutchings (151243-089)
Margaret Woodcock, tripped and fell over one of the traffic islands that separate the parking spaces and cycle lane in Esplanade, Eastney ''Picture: Allan Hutchings (151243-089)
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CARER Margaret Woodcock has criticised traffic islands along the seafront after tripping on one and breaking her arm.

She was visiting the Coffee Cup on the Esplanade in Eastney with her friend when she fell and was unable to get up for 15 minutes.

The traffic island that Margaret Woodcock fell over

The traffic island that Margaret Woodcock fell over

The 78-year-old, who cares full-time for her husband John at home, said: ‘I got out of the parked car and walked around the front to the other side, where I tripped straight over the island and went tumbling down.

‘I banged my head and realised I’d done something to my arm when I tried to move it.

‘My friend couldn’t help me because I’ve had a hip replacement and I didn’t know how was safe for me to move, I was terrified I’d done some serious damage.’

After some time, a pair of passing cyclists managed to help Margaret, of Southsea, get up on her feet, and she was then taken to hospital.

‘I was put in a sling and told I’d fractured my left elbow,’ she said.

‘I feel so angry because I didn’t even see the island – you’re in a hurry to get out of the road because it’s dangerous enough as it is.

‘For elderly people like myself, and even children, this is a real problem.

‘Since my accident, lots of people have told me how hazardous they think it is.

‘It was all very scary and I want to highlight this so that people of all age groups are aware.’

Margaret, who is now getting the mobility in her arm back, reported the incident to the city council by phone but has not yet heard anything.

But she was contacted by Colas, which has the roads management contract from the council, which apologised for her fall.

Alan Cufley, director for transport, environment and business support at the city council, told The News: ‘The islands are in place to reduce risk of collision between cyclists and open car doors.

‘They passed an independent road safety audit before installation, are placed in a hatched box and are like many kerbs in the city.

‘I’m sorry to hear of Mrs Woodcock’s incident and wish her a swift recovery.’

Hazel Pople, who runs a sandwich kiosk on the Esplanade with her husband and nephew, told The News: ‘I saw an old lady go over and they had to phone an ambulance.

‘There have been quite a few accidents because of those islands. They blend in too much with the road, which makes it dangerous.

‘Something needs to be done.’