Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

There is no amount of money you can put on a life: Plea for flyover objectors to drop complaints

Jill Fotheringham, Safety campaigner, left, and the notorious Laurencekirk junction on the A90 Aberdeen to Dundee road.
Jill Fotheringham, Safety campaigner, left, and the notorious Laurencekirk junction on the A90 Aberdeen to Dundee road.

Local landowners threatening to hold up a badly-needed road improvement scheme have been urged to drop their complaints in case the delay costs lives.

Laurencekirk resident Jill Fotheringham has been campaigning for more than 16 years for changes at the junction between the A90 Aberdeen to Dundee road and the A937 Laurencekirk to Montrose route.

The stretch has been the site of many accidents and near-misses over the years, including fatalities.

But there are fears that work to create a safety-boosting flyover could be delayed by a public inquiry if people continue to oppose the scheme.

One of the objectors, Aberdeenshire Council, has this week signalled it could soon be withdrawing its complaint.

Ms Fotheringham  – a local florist who has spearheaded the fight for a grade-separated crossing since she saw the devastating impact on the family of a young driver killed there in 2004 – has urged the three other objectors, who are landowners in the area, to allow the project to proceed.

She said: “I think it’s absolutely fantastic news if Aberdeenshire Council will be pulling its objection.

“A public inquiry could hold the whole thing up for years to come, and if that goes ahead it would just be devastating for the community.

“So if Aberdeenshire Council’s issues are off the table that’s brilliant, and hopefully the other three complaints from objectors can be addressed quickly, making it so there’s no need at all for a public inquiry.

“I’m sure these objections are legitimate, but if they could possibly find it within themselves to reach an agreement they can help save lives.

“This is not just a run-of-the-mill thing that we’re doing here, this could save a life. A life is precious, and really, there is no amount of money you can put on a human life, none at all.”

Between October and December 2019, 1,753 motorists were caught over the 50mph speed limit on the A90 as it passes Laurencekirk – almost twice the number recorded speeding on the rest of the road, which is 70mph, during the same period.

A £24 million flyover project is currently in the works by Transport Scotland, however earlier this year it was revealed that four objections had been made to the proposals.

Artist impression showing plans for the Laurencekirk junction

It has now emerged that Aberdeenshire Council and Nestrans believe a solution can be found to their concerns of allowing safe access to the homes south of the Oatyhill area and the local authority appears poised to drop its reservations.

 

Jill Fotheringham.

Ms Fotheringham said of the objectors: “If they can get this resolved without it going to a public inquiry, it will make a huge difference and potentially prevent tragedy.”

A council spokeswoman said: “Both Aberdeenshire Council and Nestrans have committed to support the project and anticipate that a technical solution can be found to deliver the long awaiting junction improvement, and maintain safe access to the dwellings south of Oatyhill.”

A spokeswoman for Transport Scotland said the Scottish Government is committed to completing the scheme “as soon as possible”.

Already a subscriber? Sign in

[[title]]

[[text]]