Campaign for safety measures on St Albans road after cat is killed

A HEARTLESS driver killed a cat and failed to stop along a road where residents have been campaigning for safety measures for years.

Now Thirlmere Drive resident Dawn Allen fears that a child could be hurt or killed unless speed bumps are installed along the road, which she claims hundreds of drivers are using as a rat run each day to avoid traffic calming measures in the adjacent Cell Barnes Lane.

Her long-haired tabby cat Smudge, who was just about to give birth to kittens, was struck on the night of Thursday, September 16, by a woman driver who was estimated to be driving at a speed between 40mph and 60mph along the residential street.

She sped away from the scene after initially slowing down when she hit the cat but the drivers behind and in front were unable to take down her registration plate in time.

Smudge, who Mrs Allen said was extremely careful crossing roads, had been hit at such a force that it took some time to clear the road due to the amount of blood.


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It has left her four children devastated for the second time in the last two years – their cat Tiger was also hit along the road but managed to drag itself to the front door where they found him laying with a broken back and he had to be put down.

Mrs Allen, who said she counted 104 speeding cars using the road in one hour on Friday morning, said: “I can’t believe someone has done this. The woman can’t have had one ounce of decency in her.

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“She knew she had hit something because she stopped, looked and then sped off. If this person could do this to a cat then she could do it to a child or even an old or disabled people.

“I have four young children and two of them are under the age of five and I’m worried that just walking them out to the car there is going to be a serious accident.

“We have an 18 month old who has absolutely no road sense, and I can’t even trust the children to be in the front garden and play outside, or even walk to school because cars could mount the kerb and hit them. It’s like Brands Hatch.”

Mrs Allen, who moved to the road with husband Paul three years ago and has two other cats, added: “We’ve been trying for years to get something done but when is someone going to do something, when a child gets hurt or killed?

“We are all devastated to lose a cat but I can’t imagine what it would be like to lose a child.”

She understands that a petition for speed humps had been submitted in the past, especially since Windermere Primary School is located on the road.

Her neighbour, who is a local secondary school teacher but did not want to be named echoed her sentiments and said: “It’s unfair as most roads that have primary schools in them have speed bumps and we need it here.

“It’s not even a matter of choice, it’s a necessity.”

A spokesperson for Herts Highways recommended that residents raise their concerns in person or through a councillor at the local police forum which can result in officers checking speeds and sharing their findings with Herts Highways who then consider what action to take.

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