Elec­tion hope­fuls back A85 cam­paign

The Oban Times - - NEWS -

THE Stay Alive on the A85 cam­paign is re­ally tak­ing off and this week we hear what coun­cil elec­tion can­di­dates think of the prob­lem.

It was com­mu­nity coun­cil­lor Sean MacIntyre who kicked off the first pe­ti­tion to raise the profile of the dan­gers of the road.

Mr MacIntyre said: ‘The 30mph speed limit should be stretched as far as the ceme­tery. And from there to Dun­beg, dou­ble white lines and a re­duc­tion in speed from 60mph, as this sec­tion of road is used more since the cy­cle track was opened.’

The cy­cle track runs be­tween Gana­van Sands and Dun­beg, which di­rects cy­clists onto the main road in both di­rec­tions.

Mr MacIntyre worked on the ini­tial cam­paign along­side Julie McKen­zie, who is com­mit­ted to mak­ing the road safer. Al­lan McKie, who sup­ports

The Oban Times cam­paign, said: ‘ We should be se­ri­ously con­sid­er­ing av­er­age-speed cam­eras and re­duc­ing the speed limit on this stretch to 50mph. Be­ing proac­tive will save lives; be­ing reactive won’t.’

Wil­liam Mo­hied­deen, said: ‘I am very happy to sup­port The

Oban Times cam­paign to make the jour­ney be­tween Con­nel and Oban a safer one.

‘I back the cam­paign de­mands for traf­fic- calm­ing mea­sures, and would par­tic­u­larly like to see com­mit­ments made to en­cour­age ac­tive trans­port – walk­ing and cy­cling – by in­stalling a safe path through­out the Con­nel- Oban route.’

Kieron Green said: ‘I have pre­vi­ously raised with Trans­port Scot­land my wish for a 40mph speed limit from Oban to be­yond Pen­ny­fuir ceme­tery, and high­lighted the im­por­tance of buses be­ing able to stop there.

‘I also feel dou­ble white lines pre­vent­ing dan­ger­ous over­tak­ing from Oban to Dun­beg, and an off-road link com­plet­ing the na­tional cy­cle route be­tween Oban and Con­nel would im­prove safety.’

Brian Bur­nett said: ‘I would like to see the fol­low­ing im­prove­ments: speed lim­ited to 50mph and en­forced by av­er­age-speed cam­eras, dou­ble white lines to pre­vent over­tak­ing, im­proved junc­tion at Dun­beg and a bus lay-bys where ap­pro­pri­ate.’

An­drew Ven­nard said: ‘It would be use­ful for a re­port to be com­mis­sioned in re­la­tion to the whole of the road to iden­tify the best way of re­duc­ing accidents, as well as iden­ti­fy­ing the costs.

‘Since the A85 is a trunk road, and since any works will re­quire the ap­proval of Trans­port Scot­land, it would be very dif­fi­cult for me to sug­gest my own per­sonal choice im­prove­ments, and so the next steps would be to work with Trans­port Scot­land to agree a suit­able set of mea­sures.’

Breege Smyth com­mented: ‘I have pledged sup­port for this cam­paign be­cause there have been too many deaths on this stretch. Some­thing has to be done. Bad driv­ing con­trib­utes and speed is a fac­tor but is there more?

‘I would like to know what ef­fect the anti-skid sur­face has had. A re­duc­tion in speed would re­sult in fewer fa­tal­i­ties. I would wel­come a speed re­stric­tion and av­er­age-speed cam­eras.’

David Pol­lard said: ‘I agree that it is im­por­tant to im­prove safety on the A85. The main prob­lems are ex­ces­sive speed and dan­ger­ous over­tak­ing.

I sug­gest in­stalling a round­about or traf­fic lights at the Dun­beg junc­tion, speed cam­eras be­tween Oban and Con­nel, and smooth­ing out some of the more dan­ger­ous bends on the road.’

Neil Mackay said: ‘Stop, look, lis­ten. We have waited long enough for these words to be put into practice. The A85 author­ity need to stop as soon as pos­si­ble, look very care­fully at the dread­ful statis­tics of this road and lis­ten to those who live with the statis­tics, hear the sounds of emer­gency ser­vices and dread what it could mean.’ Mary-Jean Devon said: ‘I have al­ways found dif­fer­ent times of the year to have spe­cific is­sues. I also think young people should be cau­tious when driv­ing on any road.

‘Too many lives are lost to poor driv­ing on roads that in some places re­quire ma­jor in­vest­ment.’

Jim Lynch said: ‘The re­duc­tion in the speed limit to 40mph and the in­tro­duc­tion of dou­ble white lines would go some way to im­prov­ing the sit­u­a­tion. How­ever, driv­ers’ be­haviour also needs to change. I would like ad­di­tional signs alert­ing driv­ers to the dan­gers of speed­ing and over­tak­ing.

‘I have urged my cam­paign­ers to sup­port the pe­ti­ti­tion via change.org.’

Jamie McGrigor added: ‘The A85 has many blackspots. More warn­ings are needed of the po­ten­tial haz­ards of which many tourists may be un­aware. The mod­ern signs which flash are very ef­fec­tive and more should be in­stalled. The sec­tion be­tween Con­nel and Oban has tight turns and is of­ten too nar­row. It needs to be widened and straight­ened with more warn­ing signs.’

Elaine Robert­son added: ‘I have spoken to Trans­port Scot­land about safety on the A85, with par­tic­u­lar re­gard to the Oban/ Dun­beg sec­tion. We ur­gently need dou­ble white lines and prefer­ably a 40mph re­stric­tion.

‘We also need im­prove­ments to safety at the Dun­beg junc­tion, per­haps lights and def­i­nitely a round­about.’

All 18 can­di­dates were con­tacted for a com­ment.

Thanks to every­one who has con­tacted The Oban Times cam­paign team to dis­cuss the concerns about the A85.

Next week, we will have some in­sight into the road it­self and will be­gin to share some of the hun­dreds of com­ments we have re­ceived.

Dan­ger: a car over­takes an Oban Times staff mem­ber just be­fore a blind bend com­ing out of Con­nel. To watch our video visit The Oban Times web­site at www.theoban­times.co.uk

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.