Pupils of a Teignmouth primary school will be able to cross a main road safely from September, after councillors approved a new signalised crossing.

The ‘puffin’ crossing with traffic lights will be constructed outside Hazeldown Primary School on Higher Exeter Road during the 2023 summer holiday.

It will cost around £165,000, funded through the local transport plan.

Teignbridge’s highways and traffic orders committee heard on Friday how the current school patrol staff who help pupils cross the road reported ‘numerous incidents and near misses since September 2021.’

Members were also told that, despite the stretch of road having a 30 mph speed limit, surveys found 85 per cent of vehicles travelling at an average of 39.5 mph, while the police recorded 70 speeding offences there in November 2020.

A council report said: ‘Due to the high risk road environment at this site it has been recommended that a controlled puffin crossing facility is progressed at the earliest opportunity as a school pedestrian safety improvement measure.”

Local councillor David Cox (Lib Dem, Teignmouth) said it was a ‘very welcome move’.

‘It is dangerous,’ he added. ‘It is actually dangerous to the crossing patrol person because I believe they’ve been buzzed by people zooming up there, so I wholeheartedly welcome this and hope people support this.’

An officer clarified the installation will take place during the 2023 summer holidays due to construction work taking four weeks.

They also confirmed the crossing patrol person will then no longer patrol the site: ‘We don’t retain patrols on zebra or signalised crossings’.

The council report concluded: ‘It is recommended that the scheme be approved for construction to both support the school safety and to promote sustainable, healthy, and independent travel choices.’

Members of the committee backed the scheme unanimously.’