Anything that helps safety has got to be welcome

Anyone who has ever done the school run knows only too well what a free-for-all it can become on the roads.

Wednesday, 31st August 2016, 6:00 am

With most schools having limited parking close by, the pressure for a parking spot can be intense.

But sometimes that means that parents park dangerously on the zig-zag lines close to school gates.

This defeats the very reason the lines exist – to help keep youngsters safe as they arrive and leave school.

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We’re sure there would be very few people who would argue with the installation of cameras to monitor this situation as we report today.

Portsmouth City Council is putting the new cameras in position at secret locations.

They will monitor hotspots and record the number plate of anyone who breaches the parking rules.

Those who do can expect a £70 penalty notice to drop through their doors in the next few weeks.

We wholeheartedly support this move.

While some may say it’s heavy-handed and Big Brother-ish, we would say nothing trumps safety.

If this saves just one child from being injured, however serious, then it’s a success.

And if it makes sometimes-selfish drivers pause for thought when they pull up at the school gates, then it’s a success.

Of course we understand that time pressure and stress can make people make poor choices under pressure.

But this penalty is not about finger-pointing.

It’s about getting the message across loud and clear that our young people deserve to be able to get to and from school without risking life and limb on the road.

Councillor Jim Fleming, the council’s cabinet member for traffic and transport says: ‘The safety of children is of the utmost importance.’

We can’t put it any better than that.

So next time you’re on the school run and you’re tempted just to nip in on the zig-zags, take a moment to think.

Is it really worth it?