Funeral procession forced to brake for speedy students

‘Too sad for words’

Funeral procession forced to brake for speedy students

Drivers often have to brake hard when they’re driving towards funeral centre Yarden along the Crematoriumlaan. Students en route to Zernike often blindly cross the Crematoriumlaan, interrupting funeral processions.
Door Paulien Plat / Translation by Sarah van Steenderen

‘It’s just too sad for words’, says Willem Hogekamp, funeral arranger with Yarden’s crematorium. Some cyclists politely wait at the crossing. ‘But a lot of them just cross the street.’ He understands that it’s difficult to stop if you’re in the middle of large group of moving cyclists. ‘But they should really show some respect.’ 

Next to the cycling path, just before the intersection with the Crematoriumlaan, there’s a bright yellow sign with a picture of a hearse and the word ‘Respect’. It is in fact illegal to cross a funeral procession, but most people don’t care. Speedy students throw themselves in front of the hearse or dash between the other cars in the procession. 

There have been times where the hearse driver had to brake hard to avoid hitting a student. Hogekamp says it happens every day. ‘It’s a real nuisance. Anything that could happen has happened.’ He feels especially bad for the relatives who are there to mourn a loved one. ‘But it’s also a drag for us as funeral service employees.’ 

More reports

Yarden has been reporting the incidents to the city; the number of reports has gone up over the past few months. City spokesperson Peter Grondsma thinks this is because of the start of the academic year, which has brought in students who aren’t aware of the situation. ‘That’s why we put up those yellow signs.’

The people of Yarden haven’t noticed a difference, however. ‘Sure, there’s a sign. But people either have respect or they don’t’, says Hogekamp. ‘It would be great if everyone just waited.’ 

Restructuring the intersection might help. ‘We’ll start work in that either this year or next year’, says Grondsma. ‘We’ll be making the situation more organised, using different colours asphalt.’ The restructuring is supposed to make cyclists stop and wait for the processions to pass. But, says Hogekamp, ‘it’s just a matter of decency.’ 

Over Saskia Jonker

Saskia Jonker

Eindredacteur. Is in haar vrije tijd op een missie om alle restaurants in Stad uit te proberen.

Copy editor. In her free time she is on a mission to try out all the restaurants in the city.

Nederlands

04 November 2019 | 5-11-2019, 10:33