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Residents Ask Drivers to Slow Down

Residents of a local village are calling for drivers to watch their speed after a road traffic accident saw a car land on its roof metres from a nursery.

Milton Bridge witnessed a major road accident last month but luckily those involved escaped unscathed.

However the accident is now prompting residents and local business owners to question whether the removal of speed reducing measures has impacted the safety on the village, which lies on a busy trunk road.

A silver family car was travelling southbound on the A701, when it collided with a parked vehicle causing it to rotate 180 degrees in the air and land on its roof. The accident had no serious injuries but the road had to be closed to deal with the aftermath of the crash.

Those living nearby, attribute the crash to the removal of traffic islands which acted as speed reducing measures.

One resident Mhairi Coyle told us:

I stopped by just as they had both cars loaded onto a truck. We’ve observed an increase in traffic speeds since they removed the islands and it’s been an accident waiting to happen – it was pure luck that no children were in the parked car or walking to or from the nursery. Vehicles coming from Edinburgh are not really aware they’re entering a residential/business area as the “Welcome to Milton Bridge” signs have gone too, the 30 mph limit signs are not enough. We will be lobbying the council to get some traffic calming reinstated and ideally a controlled pedestrian crossing.

Since we spoke to Ms Coyle, the Milton Bridge signs have been reinstated, although several metres north from their original position.

The secretary of Glencorse Golf Club, Dougie Audsley, added:

This is not the first time there has been an accident outside the Golf Club but in previous incidents, the accidents have been caused by traffic coming the other way and cars losing control on the bend. We have had various traffic islands installed to try and reduce the speed of vehicles but they have recently been removed.

However, Midlothian Council said they had undertaken studies which show there is no evidence of excess speeding. A spokesperson for the authority said:

We have been informed of an accident between two cars on the A701 in Milton Bridge which led to one of the occupants of one of the vehicles being slightly injured.  The Police asked the Council to assist in clearing up after the crash.

The Council does not normally use a camera to monitor traffic speeds – instead we use automatic traffic counters.  One of these was in place in Milton Bridge from 12th to 31st May this year.  This found that the average speed in the 30mph limit was 32mph – this is a little faster than we would like, but not unusual on a commuter route. We do not record which vehicles were speeding, and enforcement of speed limits is a Police responsibility.

The spokesperson continued, reiterating the need to remove the traffic islands:

We have removed some of the traffic islands on the A701, and carried out works to widen the cycle lanes.  This allows other vehicles to pass a cyclist without trying to squeeze past them in too small a gap.  Further work has been planned, including improving the conspicuity of the existing speed limit signs, although drivers should be aware that as the road has streetlights, a 30mph limit applies unless signs show otherwise.

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