Speed limit is cut after fatal crash

A POLICEMAN’S plea to make Summerfield Road 25mph in the wake of a child’s death has been acted on by the Environment Department.

A POLICEMAN’S plea to make Summerfield Road 25mph in the wake of a child’s death has been acted on by the Environment Department.

Traffic Sergeant John Tostevin recommended several changes to the road after seven-year-old Mai-Lea Falla was killed last year when she was hit by a quad bike as she crossed the road.

The reduced speed has been brought in on a trial basis along with changes to roads in the area.

‘The Route des Coutures, Summerfield Road and North Quay areas can often be busy places for both traffic and pedestrian movements due to retail, commerce, residential and school-related activities,’ a department spokesman said.

‘The changes will hopefully help to improve road safety at locations where there have regrettably been pedestrian fatalities in recent years.’

Route des Coutures, Summerfield Road and North Quay are being reduced from 35mph during a nine- and 12-month experiment. The public are invited to submit written comments on the scheme.

Comments for: "Speed limit is cut after fatal crash"

Victor Meldrew

There are many more roads where the speed limit should be reduced. One I suggest is Le Friquet, where despite "Slow" markings at the approach to the bend near the hotel, some people put pedal to the metal even though its impossible to see the approaching traffic. The number of accidents alone on this road should have indicated the problem years ago.

Similarly, on the bend near the farm at La Ramee, Les Tracheries, Collings Road etc etc. Our roads were meant for horses and carts, not 83000 motors.



I`d love to know how 65,000 total population of Guernsey can drive 83,000 vehicles.

Do some of them wear Smart cars like roller skates perhaps?


Whilst I do have every sympathy for the parents of the poor child killed in this accident was it ever established what speed the quad was travelling at? If it wasn’t obeying the 35mph limit anyway then what difference is lowering it to 25mph likely to make?

My personal view is lowering speed limits is not the panacea Sgt Tostevin seems to think it is. It is probably fair to say a lot of drivers don’t obey speed limits as it is and somehow manage to get from A to B without killing themselves to death every day but equally, a lot of drivers undertake certain manoeuvres within the speed limit, but at wholly inappropriate speeds (such as rounding blind corners, mounting pavements and even driving in heavy rain!). The real issue is that driving standards are in all honesty, rather poor across the board. I’m not saying I’m any better but I do at least think about my driving and try to avoid making the same mistakes twice!

I wonder if sales of red flags will see a sudden increase in the near future?


They established that the quad bike was not breaking the 35 mph speed limit.


Ok, thank you for confirming that.


lowering the speed limit from 35 to 25 wont make it any safer, pointless exercise..


If the quad was not seen to be speeding the only other reason is another road marked 25mph, it's easy money for the court, oh he was gunned doing 28.5mph for a timed duration of one split second, lets face it they can't solve a crime but are professional at handing out tickets for mobile phones, seat belts, tell me something why don't they give the islanders a brake and speed gun 35mph zones, I've not seen them in a 35 zone for years, there as much a joke as are the states members.


How about only having 25mph limits around school during morning, lunch and end of day times, along with special events. all other times the limits should return to 35mph. This would be easy to achieve at most schools by only enforcing the limit when the amber lights are flashing!


Completely agree, they do this in Jersey and it actually works very well.

Though of course by mentioning Jersey do it I've probably just ensured the death of this idea!


Possibly but,we did copy the Filter in Turn idea from Jersey, if my memory serves me right.


Must admit, I'd thought of that too. But it wouldnt be easy to police - i.e. police would need to be able to tell off offenders if need be.

But if you put in that the road is only 25mph for 3 different times of the day and the rest it is 25mph, this will just create mass confusion - and that's a hell of a lot to read on a signpost for locals and people visiting the island!

ALSO, there's the opportunity for speeders to argue that they were driving down the road at 2:59pm and not at 3pm when PC Plod says they were etc etc.

And I cant see them setting up all the flashing lights in the island to come on at all these specific times.

It'd just be better to set all dangerous roads to 25mph. THEN, if someone if speeding, they're caught bang to rights and have no excuse, which is exactly the position speeders are in - no excuse!

Oh Dear

Put up a sign that says, when amber light shows 25mph. There's no need to explain it overly clearly on a sign. For normal speed limit signs they don't write, 35mph is the maximum speed you can go on this stretch of road, if you go faster you'll be prosecuted by the Police. Although people would probably slow down to try and read it.


It is the quality of the driving on the island that is poor, a drive last week to the airport and back was quite an eye opener.

A van drove nearly all the way on the pavement going like the clappers from Candie road down to Talbot valley, another motorist on the phone and lo and behold another drinking a coffee,three offences in about 3 minutes.

And just to mention on the journey there through the lanes a lady in a rather large 4 x4 could not reverse to save her life, I could not go back as I would have been in a ditch but I reckon it took her a good 5 minutes to go back a few feet into a gateway, and she was in charge of that machine. No speed limit would fix those problems,



The driving standards on the Island are as good as anywhere else ...Just look at the mess visitors get into when driving around the Island. Yes we have a few bad driver but they have them everywhere else too.

when I fist came to the island I was impressed by the way people zipped around the little lanes, reversing back when a car came the other way.... No, I think some local drivers do themselves and others injustice "you're all pretty good

drivers" .... but keep of the mobile phone!!


More people need to understand road signs and road markings!

i.e. doyle road - stay in lane! too many people cannot stay in lane! I saw a vehicle go from coronation road into doyle road, and the vehicle went AROUND the bollard almost causing a head on collision with me (going from the fire station) because he didnt understand "STAY IN LANE" !!

also wing mirrors - too many drivers have them folded in! mirrors are there to be used, not folded in! theyre important to make sure you dont run over a motorcyclist who is flying down the middle of the road to skip all the traffic and hasnt noticed you indicate (or you havent indicated in the first place anyway...)

Oh Dear

MarkB, you're correct. I witnessed an English registered car trying to exit Saumarez park a few days ago. His Mercedes doesn't look as pretty with the car length scratches he aquired.



These are exactly the problems I've hi-lighted before. The standard of driving is so poor sometimes and when your following these people you're just waiting for an accident to happen. Tail-gateing is rife on this island. Every moring on my drive to work I see someone doing it. They don't keep an eye on what's going on beyond the car they are following either. There is no anticipation of what is going to happen next. People are gonna learn the hard way unfortunately. It's a shame the police don't crack down on it really.

The worst places on my daily journey are Capelles road down to the crossroads at Oatlands and driving through Baubigny which is 20mph. I'd say 50-60% of drivers don't stick to the speed limit and tailgate the drivers who do. They could fill the black hole with speeding offences in that road in a day!

My other bug bear is the dreaded left turn where some drivers feel it the law to swing into the path of oncoming traffic on their right just to make a left turn. There is going to be the mother of all accidents soon if this continues.


Re your last paragraph, I call that Swan necking. Completely pointless in most situations unless you're driving an articulated lorry (and how many of those are on our roads?!)

My personal biggest bug bear is people being incapable of keeping to the left hand side of those pesky white lines painted in the middle of the road. Usually it's the smallest vehicles who are the worst offenders.

Island Wide Voting

My personal biggest bugbear is cyclists

That's it :)


I agree with you on the swan necking although it doesn't really do any harm unless people are pulling into oncoming traffic to do it.

There's also nothing wrong with going over the centre line in the road providing it isn't a solid line and there isn't oncoming traffic.

Although most people I've seen doing it do it regardless of other traffic on the road. It's normally an OAP in a small peroduo going 10mph under the speed limit.


Bottom of Candy Road, far too many small to medium sized vehicles pulling into the right hand lane to turn left!


Exactly, it doesn't need to be done.

Shows very poor driving in my opinion.

Island Wide Voting

Exactly the same thing happens at the bottom of Candie Road ... very annoying when you miss the lights because of it


Chris, what a ridiculous statement. The numerous published reports shows clearly that the risk of serious injury or death is dramatically reduced by reducing speed limits. If you are suggesting that motorists will simply ignore the revised speed limits then the only answer is to increase the penalties to such a degree that no one will want to speed.

On a wider note I would suggest that as a bare minimum any road that has NO pavement should be an automatic maximum speed limit of 25 mph.


The limits are being changed ahead of the school changes. Couture and Belval areas are already gridlocked when picking the children up. We now have to park not only either side of the school if we are early enough, but down Couture hill or down the road to Maison Maritaine. When all the new cars and st Sampsons children join, it is going to be impossible to do 25 mph anyway. Trying to overtake cars at Croix du Bois, with oncoming parents and walking parents and no footpath is already far from safe, but when they add another school, it will be a very, very slow and dangerous part of the day. The special constables are already unable to wave people through as everything is jammed, wait until we add another 50 cars.


Why the hell is north quay being made 25mph limit? Ridiculous.


I agree, it's probably one of the safest roads on the island. It's nice and wide enough for all traffic with room to spare.


Dear Concerned. 25 at North Side not ridiculous to the gentleman who was killed there last year. Too many cars rushing around like idiots. Time for a 25 mph island wide limit with 15 in lanes.


Rubbish. Some of you won't be happy till we are all driving at walking pace. And if we lower the speed limit everytime there is an accident, sooner or later we will all be at a standstill.



I don't think that that this would help. If motorists realised that 35mph was the maximum and not mandatory and drove at speed consistent with the road, the distance they can see and weather conditions then the problems would not occur. If some motorists can't obey the speed limits now lowering them will not help, except maybe help to fill the black hole.

Dave Jones


I live along the North Side and certainly at night it becomes a race track.

I think Sgt Tostevin and Environment should be commended for this initiative as it should at least slow the traffic down.

Once again this is being done to curb the behaviour of a minority who travel at speeds that can only be described on occasions as criminal and it is unfortunate that more police time has to be spent trying to curb the behaviour of a few.


So will reducing speed limits stop it becoming a 'race track' at night? I doubt it personally.


I agree

And the time that they enforce these limits actively will be at night time, when there is a free flow of traffic and 35mph is perfectly safe. It is a wide well lit area

The people that this speed limit drop is meant to protect, school children and shoppers on the bride will not be there to gain the benefit of the enforcement.

I think a system of 'when the orange lights flash' a la Jersey and the UK would be much more suitable for a lot of places in the island. To promote a mixture of road safety for the vulnerable, but to also permit traffic flow when it is safe to do so.

Oh Dear

Glanztar, your gravatar makes it quite obvious why you're opposed to this idea.

The police need to learn the route that the Kev run follows and shut it down. I know that they all stop off at Grandes Roques and the North Beach car par. If the police really want to make some money and prosecute some of these idiots it's quite simple.


Oh Dear,

Why does it?

I think thats a slight knee jerk reaction to an issue thats not even the issue in hand.

Unless any of these tragic incidents were caused by 'kevs', which to my recollection they werent

Oh Dear

How many accidents have been due to "Kevs" though? There are a huge number of disabled people on this island because lots of people decide that it's fun to drive like a maniac.

It's very relevant to the subject. You're against it getting changed because you don't want to be caught going 5o in a 25 zone. You'd get a lesser sentence/punishment going 50 in a 35 zone. It doesn't take a genius to figure it out.


I dont think there is a huge number. I can think of maybe 2/3. Which I agree is 2/3 too high.

And I dont think you can argue that driving like a maniac is fun. Thats why motorsport is so popular! Its just the doing it on public roads, which I agree is an issue.

But this particular speed limit cut isnt going to stop people from speeding down there. It will just reduce the speed on one of our largest, best lit, clearest peices of road. Its entirely counter-intuiative.

If the problem is people crossing and pedestrians in the area, then create a crossing to solve the problem. Dont indirectly solve it by lowering limits.


I agree the young lads in cars today do as they please


A speed limit sign with a different number on it won't change that. Only police presence will, which I agree is a shame that police resources have to be wasted on this.

Dave Jones


We as residents of Northside cross the road at night too, we have children and grandchildren who use the area all the time.

It could be policed by a single speed camera which would catch every motorist speeding both day and night and the investment would soon be recouped through fixed penalty fines.



Understood, and agreed. but maybe a crossing or something would be more appropriate if that is the concern?

Maybe some sort of lights or filter, which would also make it easier to exit from the minor road between Quayside and Vale Castle (the name escapes me at the moment)


You mean a fixed speed camera? Of the sort that everybody (except the unobservant) just brake for and then speed up again?

Dave Jones


No it dosnt have to be fixed, It could be a speed camera in a parked vehicle as the Gendarmes use in France, clearly in Guernsey you would need to rotate the vehicles used but they do catch an awful lot of people.



Or they could just hide behind a parked car, hedge, wall etc. as they do at the moment ;-)

Dave Jones


That is the point; these cameras don’t have to have a police officer operating them as they are automatic, they pick up the speed of an approaching vehicle photograph it if it travelling over the pre -set limit and the first thing the motorist would know about it is when they receive a copy of the photograph and the fixed penalty ticket in the post.

Guern Lass

Speed humps.... in all problem areas. My opinion, but the speeders won't want to mess up their suspension would they?


Neither do I thank you, and I always go over speed bumps slowly.

Also, living next door to a speed bump is horrendous, imagine the noise of people braking hard for it, a thump as they go over and then hard acceleration away.

Guern Lass

Fair point, but at least people would have to slow down for the crossing. Visibility isn't brilliant along there.

Guern Lass

Southside is 25mph and people continue to speed along there at night. I hear tyre screeches by the zebra crossing there. Speed hump the problem areas including the Southside crossing. Force people to slow down then speed limits cannot be ignored.


Just a few points from me - I tend to find myself driving at a speed appropriate for the road. If its built up and busy I wont or can't drive at 35mph anyway and when its wet I slow down as well. Some roads are 25moh and its hard to lower ones speed when you see its clear and free of dangers, like say the Vaquidor where the Police could catch almost every motorist doing 35mph. I followed a police m.bike along the Basseries (25mph) the other day and I was hitting 40mph to catch him. I pulled over when he did and told him off, he said he didnt realise his speed - but that wont stop him writing tickets for other people with the same excuse will it!?

The Longfrie is 25mph but (coming from the airport) if you turn right into the lanes towards St Sav church, then there's a 35mph sign. I mean thats a nonsense as the lane gets smaller and smaller with all sorts of twisty corners - I wouldnt try to drive 35mph down there anytime, but on the bigger/clearer road I would say 30mph is fine.

Let common sense apply please and spend more time educating people about how to drive consideratly in the first place. Sure give tickets to idiots who drive at 50mph but not normal people who inadvertantly drive at 35mph in a 25mph when its a safe, clear and dry road.

The Police shold spend their time catching the "pedal to the metal" people who can often be heard coming from a long way away...

I have been stopped by the Police for doing 35mph in a 25mph but I would say that I was still safe - incidentally I have more respect for the Police because they warned me and didn't give me a ticket!

cyril serbant

'Sure give tickets to idiots who drive at 50mph but not normal people who inadvertantly drive at 35mph in a 25mph when its a safe, clear and dry road.'

Do you not have a speedometer in your car?

I love it when speeding gets raised and the 'I'm so awesome at driving that I should be allowed to speed' start their drivel, especially when they think that 'normal drivers' are those mindless individuals that don't really take any notice of what speed they are going. Priceless.

'incidentally I have more respect for the Police because they warned me and didn’t give me a ticket!'



Apologies but wasn't the accident caused because the child ran out behind a waste truck and not because the quad was speeding?


HEAR HEAR finally someone with sense and can read well done the fact is the quadbike rider was proven to be not a fault in this terrible ACCIDENT summerfield road has allways been a swine of a road? just drop the speed and hope another life dosent get lost

Island Wide Voting

No great shakes as Summerfield Road is usually full of parked vehicles ,day and night,so 25MPH is about all you can safely do in that road anyway ,same goes for Route des Coutures

Just as an aside,at 35MPH it takes 5.84 seconds to travel 100 yards. At 25MPH it takes 8.18 seconds,hardly worth losing sleep over methinks

Rob Miami

My heart goes out to the parents, relatives and friends of this young girl.

I hope that the investigation takes place and the appropriate action follows.

I can only hope that this was an awful accident and that more peoples lives are not destroyed.


I haven't seen any suggestions that the Green Cross Man is brought back and education increased for children on how to behave near roads? Would a lower limit have prevented this tragedy? I think not, sadly.