Council: drivers would ignore new traffic lights

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Road safety campaigners have persuaded East Renfrewshire Council to increase traffic calming measures at a busy road in Newton Mearns — but the council has stopped short of installing traffic lights.

Father-of-two Graham McClure said worried residents are calling for traffic lights or a zebra crossing on a high volume stretch of Barrhead Road.

Mr McClure dismissed a response from roads and transport manager Charles Armstrong.

The campaigner, who has attracted the support of Eastwood MSP Ken Macintosh, was responding to the latest rejection of his traffic lights appeal.

In correspondence to Mr McClure’s plea for more effective safety measures, Mr Armstrong stated: Local Transport Note 1/95 “The Assessment of Pedestrian Crossings” recommends the provision of refuges and discourages the use of signal controlled crossings (as “Drivers who become accustomed to not being stopped at the crossing may begin to ignore its existence, with dangerous consequences”)...In summary, the existing refuges and school crossing patrollers along Barrhead Road are the most appropriate facilities for pedestrians given the character of the route and the mix of uses.”

Mr Armstrong later changed his stance and agreed to plant extra signs near the school crossing.

Mr McClure contends: “To suggest that installing lights would cause an accident or just be ignored by drivers is absurd to say the least.”

The campaign was backed by a petition of almost 700 signatures which Mr McClure presented to MSP Ken Macintosh.

The MSP said: “The council has recognised the danger to pedestrians from busy traffic with new crossings in Giffnock and one planned for the Ayr Road. We need to convince the roads authority that the 
Barrhead Road is making 
local families similarly anxious.”

Charles Armstrong’s statement is reproduced in full on the website Change.org.