Petition to reduce bypass speed limit

One of the junctions onto the Ellon bypass, Knockothie Crescent
One of the junctions onto the Ellon bypass, Knockothie Crescent

An online petition has been launched in a bid to reduce the speed limit on Ellon’s bypass.

The move comes amid claims by residents that the current 60mph limit is dangerous with the growth of residential properties in the area.

The petition has around 100 signatures so far and is seeking a reduction to 40mph.

It has been started by local mum, Mara Sturton, after she experienced a second chipped windscreen on the route.

Mara told the Times: “The level of traffic has increased significantly on the road, a lot from residential areas that have been developed and from the industrial site which is still being developed.

“People now use the bypass as a route of convenience and no longer to just pass by the town.

“There is a lot of traffic going at various speeds, which makes it dangerous.”

Another concern is the safety of children at the roadside.

Mara added: “At the end of Crimmond Drive, there is a part that fans out onto the road and there is no fencing, although I have been told that this is not a council issue.

“There are a lack of green spaces and play parks in the area so children often play football on the verges.”

Councillor Isobel Davidson said there were mixed opinions about any changes to the speed limit on the road.

The councillor added: “Chipped windscreens are caused by grit and gravel on the road, probably a result of the building work on the industrial estate and that needs to be addressed separately.

“The bypass is there to encourage drivers to avoid the town centre and that is the reason for the higher speed limit.”

Councillor Rob Merson said he would be very happy to support a reassessment of the situation in the light of the concerns expressed by the local residents.

Cont. from front page

He told the Times: “I would probably also be minded to support a reduction of the speed limit, however, there are a number of factors which need be considered before arriving at that conclusion.

“Road safety is a serious issue for all of us and is one which requires proper evaluation.”

Ellon Community Council have consistently supported a campaign to reduce the speed limit on the road.

Chairman, Sandy McDougall, said: “The community council have campaigned for the speed limit on this road to be reduced over the last three years.

“Our particular concerns are the junction with Knockothie Crescent. Despite numerous approaches to Aberdeenshire Council we are disappointed at the lack of progress.

“Oldmeldrum bypass has a reduced speed limit and we believe the people of Ellon should be equally protected from speeding motorists.”

Another Ellon resident, Audrey Kennedy, has experienced some near collisions on the stretch of road.

She said: “On one occasion a car pulled out of the industrial estate without looking. If I had been travelling at the speed limit there would have been a collision. Fortunately I was travelling at about 40mph and was able to brake in time.

“On another occasion I was slowing down to turn left into Knockothie Crescent. The car behind was travelling very fast, pulled out to overtake me, narrowly missing the car coming around the bend in the opposite direction.”

Aberdeenshire Council’s Head of Transportation, Ewan Wallace, said: “The A948 Ellon to Auchnagatt road has been built to 60mph standard and serves as a northern bypass to the town.

“Currently it does not meet the conditions for the introduction of a reduced speed limit but should further significant development take place to north of the bypass then the limits would again be reviewed to see if there was then case for a reduced limit in the areas of the new development.”