Edinburgh's Davidson's Mains still waiting for promised safety improvements at roundabout five years after fatal accident

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Council leader Adam McVey has been urged to intervene personally over the authority’s failure to carry out promised improvements to a city roundabout after a pensioner died there five years ago.

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Lib Dem councillor Kevin Lang said Alena Faltyskova had been visiting Edinburgh in 2017 to celebrate her 70th birthday when she was knocked down by a bus as she crossed the road next to the Davidson’s Mains roundabout and was tragically killed.

At Thursday’s full council meeting, Cllr Lang said: “The accident came after years of concerns about the dangers for pedestrians at the junction and prompted officials to promise safety improvements.

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Davidson's Mains roundabout.  Picture: Google Streetview.Davidson's Mains roundabout.  Picture: Google Streetview.
Davidson's Mains roundabout. Picture: Google Streetview.

“However five years on not a single change has been made to the roundabout. Indeed, I understand that designs have not even been finalised.”

And he asked if Cllr McVey would intervene to push the changes which were promised, which local people were demanding and which were so urgently needed to protect pedestrians.

Cllr McVey said: "I’m happy to follow this up with officers and find out exactly where this is in the process and why this has taken so long.”

And he suggested he could meet with Cllr Lang and others “to make sure we get the action we need as quickly as possible”.

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Mrs Faltyskova was killed instantly when she was hit by a No 41 Lothian bus. The driver said he saw her "at the last minute". He was later banned from driving for two years and given community service for driving without due care and attention.

The proposed changes drawn up following the accident included revised raised zebra crossings at three of the four exits to the roundabout, as well as LED illuminated white bands on the zebra crossing poles to increase the visibility of the crossings.

Cllr Lang said a public consultation on the new design was undertaken in 2019. but as the fifth anniversary of the fatal accident approached, no changes had been delivered, although a committee report had said the junction would be overhauled by the end of 2021.

He said: “It is disgraceful that, five years after Alena’s tragic death and despite all the promises made at the time, not a single change has been made to improve the safety of pedestrians at the Davidson’s Mains roundabout.

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Residents had been concerned for many years about the dangers of the junction, particularly given the area is a key route to school for local primary and secondary children.

“Despite a pledge that changes would be in place by the end of 2021, it seems the final designs for the changes have not even been agreed. It still remains unclear as to when any improvements will be seen on the ground.”

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