CONCERNS surrounding the safety of schoolchildren at a traffic hotspot may continue if the council's powers are not enhanced.

Leaders from three schools, Thames Valley Police and parents have all voiced fears about the volume of traffic on Crescent Road during peak hours.

Improving road safety could be helped by the formation of the East Reading Area Study Steering Group, but councillors have argued that policing 'poor' driving was not easy.

Green Party councillor Rob White raised concerns at a recent Traffic Management sub-committee meeting and urged opposition councillors to meet with the head teachers.

He said: "In the last year a car has turned over, a student was involved in an accident with a car and I have spoken to two people who have been clipped by cars while walking along Crescent Road on the school run.

"This is clearly unacceptable.

"Head teachers, the police and parents have all raised road safety concerns with me about the volume of traffic mixing with school pupils.

"Green councillors lobbied for passing places, bollards and permit parking to help with the situation, but more is clearly needed."

Cllr White called for Tony Page, the deputy leader of the council and Transport chief, to meet with the heads from local schools, including Alfred Sutton and Maiden Erleigh School, to agree further actions to improve road safety.

In response to his question, cllr Page said he hopes the new steering group will tackle the issue of 'rat-running traffic' along Crescent Road.

He added: "Dealing with poor driver behaviour is always going to be difficult and the council's powers to change this behaviour are very limited.

"The council's education asset management team meet with the schools in Crescent Road on a regular basis and I am advised that in the past a transport planner has been invited to join them.

"If the schools would like a transport planner to join them at a future meeting I am sure that officers would be happy to oblige."