Residents of a north-east town have called for a speed restriction on a busy road to be made permanent – or reduced even further.
The speed limit on the Ellon bypass was reduced from 60mph to 50mph last April amid repeated concerns about dangerous driving.
Local politicians and the community raised concerns about the proximity of the A948 Ellon to Auchnagatt road to residential areas, and the increased risk of incidents due to the junctions along it.
Aberdeenshire Council agreed to temporarily drop the speed limit to collect data to determine if the 50mph limit should be made permanent.
A spokesman for the council has now confirmed this has been extended by six months to allow a further traffic management review.
Local residents have welcomed the action and say it has made their area “a lot better and safer”, and have said they want the 50mph to stay – or even be dropped further.
Mother-of-two Emma Alexander, who has lived in a residential estate nearby since 2009, said her main concern is the safety of her kids.
The 39-year-old said: “When we first moved here we wouldn’t have noticed it that much, but we are more aware of it now that we have the kids. They play on the grass area next to the house, which is right beside the road.
“It was really, really fast when it was 60mph and it felt like people are always pushing it and going even faster than that.
“There is quite a lot of motorcycles going on that road in summertime – you can hear them going over the limit and it just makes you shiver inside.
“What if somebody lost control or if there is a car trying to come out of the junction – it’s just not safe and it’s not worth it.
Calls for further reduction to 40mph
“If it was reduced even further – that would be great for us, but 50mph was a good compromise and it has been better – less road noise and safer.”
Another resident, 44-year-old Stuart Walker, added: “The kids in the area are my only concern. Loads of them play football in the little grass field and you can often see them going on to the road to get their ball, and there is nothing out there to stop them.
“Honestly, I think it should be 40mph because of the fact that houses are so close to it.”
After the six-month extension, a report will go to the Formartine area committee for councillors to discuss the next steps.
A council spokesman said: “Formal approval for a six-month extension has been granted by Scottish ministers to enable additional speed monitoring to be undertaken on the A948 from the A90 to Yonderton.
“Motorists should note that the 50mph speed limit will remain throughout this extended period, during which our local roads team will collate further traffic data and submit a report to the Formartine area committee.”