Mum warns 'invisible' crossing on busy road an accident waiting to happen after near-miss with lorry

A lorry nearly smashed into the terrified mum and her tot after hitting the central reservation.
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A dangerous ‘invisible’ crossing on a busy road in Edinburgh has sparked safety fears with locals warning it’s an accident waiting to happen.

The central reservation on Old Dalkeith Road which has had no permanent signs or lights for more than six months has seen multiple incidents of cars hitting it and near-misses with pedestrians.

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One local mum said she was left shaken after a lorry struck the reservation, veered off the road and almost smashed into her while she was waiting at a bus stop with her tot in a pram.

Google street view shows temporary 'repairs'Google street view shows temporary 'repairs'
Google street view shows temporary 'repairs'

Several vehicles hit the crossing in the space of five minutes on Tuesday morning around 7.30am, leaving two vehicles with burst tyres, she said. The mum, who asked to remain anonymous, now leaves the house earlier and gets a different bus – to avoid using the unsafe crossing in the dark.

The mum told the Evening News: "I was at the bus stop on the way to work and taking my daughter to nursery when I saw two cars hit the reservation. It’s invisible, cars can’t see it in the dark and it’s very uneven. Both cars burst two tires. A bus went over it too but was able to keep going. Then a lorry went over it and lost control. It almost slammed into me and the pram but luckily managed to regain control. This was all within about five minutes. I was shaken up. It was terrifying. This is a serious accident waiting to happen. It’s a very busy road as the main route to the Royal Infirmary and used by parents taking their kids to nearby Craigour Primary school.”

Photos taken just before rush-hour in the last few days show cars mounting pavement near parents and children after hitting the reservation.

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According to locals, a vehicle hit the crossing last year and knocked down the lamp post. It hasn’t been replaced and Google maps shows that the crossing still has temporary signs and no lighting.

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Temporary high visibility signs and cones that were put up keep blowing over in strong winds, making it harder for cars to see the reservation in the dark.

The worried mum added: "The temporary signs and cones just blow away in strong winds or get easily knocked over. It’s too dangerous to cross the road so I now leave 15 minutes early and get a different bus that takes longer but avoids having to cross in the dark. I’ve even bought hi visibility jacket for me and tape for the pram."

“I’ve reported this to the Police. I contacted the council several times in the past two months. My neighbour hit it on Sunday and reported it then too. But when I put in my post code on the website to check road repairs, this one is marked as ‘closed’. It’s just temporary signs that were put back up yesterday. The council needs to urgently make permanent repairs, including the installation of permanent signs and reinstalling the lights. Temporary ones are just not good enough, it needs to be made safe.”

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​A Police Scotland spokesperson said: “Around 7.35am on Tuesday, 28 November, 2023, police received a report of two-vehicles crashing into the central reservation on Old Dalkeith Road, Edinburgh, at the junction with Ferniehill Drive.

“There were no injuries reported and recovery was completed around 9.15am.”

Councillor Scott Arthur, Transport and Environment Convener, said: "We're aware of damage to this island, which was struck by a vehicle. We're planning to restore the lighting and bollards on 7 December and in the meantime will be monitoring the island daily to make sure the temporary signs are still in place.

"We're sorry for any inconvenience caused while this work is being carried out."