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London Mayor wants to introduce countdown system at crossings

The Mayor of London is hoping to ease congestion on the capital's roads – by making pedestrians cross the road more quickly.

Boris Johnson is proposing to introduce a countdown system at major pedestrian crossings that will tell walkers when the lights will change from red to green.

He says that the system, already in use in other major cities, would hurry pedestrians along and allow crossing times to be reduced by up to six seconds, reducing the hold-up for traffic.

The idea is now being studied by the Department for Transport and Transport for London.

A Transport for London spokesman said that any changes would still hace to comply with Government guidelines, which demand that pedestrians are given 1.2 seconds per metre of road they have to cover.

Although no timescale has been put on introducing the countdown system, road safety groups have already said that it could endanger the lives of the elderly and disabled.

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